Businesses in Fakenham have reported a significant increase in trade throughout the big Aldiss sale which is still ongoing.

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Many say the increased footfall in the town has provided a much-needed boost over the last week and a half.

Aldiss is holding the biggest sale in its 120-year history. Discounts of up to 70pc off are being offered at the company’s stores at Oxborough Lane, Fakenham, and Hall Road Retail Park in Norwich.

The sale opened to the public last Friday and there were preview days two days before that when the stores were open to invited guests.

Last Wednesday was particularly busy in Fakenham and traffic was often gridlocked in and around the town centre.

Nick Honey, owner of Honey’s Cafe, in Miller’s Walk, said: “We’ve been incredibly busy. I noticed a few unusual accents and it seems people have come from quite far for the sale and then stopped to have a look around Fakenham.”

Craig Mattless, manager of Miller’s Walk shopping centre, said: “It was so busy last Wednesday that I had to shut the car park two hours late. I usually lock it up at 7.30pm but there were loads of cars still around.”

Nigel Benbow, manager of Benbow’s fruit and veg shop in Market Place, said: “The first few days of the sale were very busy in town and we’ve done pretty well out of it. The sale has been a boost for Fakenham in general and it’s good to have the town busy on typically quiet days.”

Vince Stewart, co-owner of The Bull pub on Bridge Street, said: “We were very busy at the start of the sale with people coming in for lunches and it has stayed pretty constant over the last week or so.”

The sale is happening to allow the Aldiss stores to be redesigned so more floor space can be dedicated to the better-performing departments. It will continue until stock is at a level where the redesigns can begin.

Aldiss MD Paul Clifford estimates the sale will continue for another week to 10 days.

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