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Resort declares shopping war on Norwich

PUBLISHED: 07:54 07 June 2006 | UPDATED: 10:58 22 October 2010

STEPHEN PULLINGER

Plans have been unveiled to draw record numbers of Sunday shoppers to Yarmouth this summer through a range of extra attractions, including speciality markets and street entertainment.

Plans have been unveiled to draw record numbers of Sunday shoppers to Yarmouth this summer through a range of extra attractions, including speciality markets and street entertainment.

The move, seen as a bid to stem the flow of shoppers to Norwich and even to attract some families from the city, is being funded by extra revenue generated by Yarmouth's Business Improvement District (Bid).

In March traders voted to set up the first Bid in East Anglia, paying a supplementary charge collected with their business rates in return for improved services and marketing.

The New Labour initiative, already adopted in about 20 towns and cities across Britain, is intended to revitalise ailing shopping centres.

Town centre manager Jonathan Newman said: “The primary benefit of the Bid was to secure the future of our town centre wardens but it has also made more funding available for special events.”

He said the aim was to increase the number of town centre shops opening on Sundays from 30pc to 80pc for the critical summer holiday period from July 23 to the end of August.

“Palmers department store is already committed to opening. It is only some of the smaller shops which will find it difficult without investing in extra staff,” he said.

“Hopefully we can give confidence to them by demonstrating an increase in Sunday shoppers.”

A season of Sunday markets will be launched on July 23 with a craft market covering everything from woodturning and canvas work to glassware.

The event will include craft demonstrations in specially-erected tents in the Market Place.

A continental market has been booked for the following Sunday, covering not only French but also Italian, German and Austrian specialities.

Mr Newman said: “I am hoping to have a market every Sunday during the holiday period. Potentially, others could include a pottery market, an Italian market and a global market, selling goods from all parts of the world.”

He said shoppers could also expect the added attraction of street entertainment, following the successful experiment at Christmas.

“As well as being in touch with a number of agencies I am also lining up some local talented entertainers,” he said.

Blob. Following the setting up of a Bid in Yarmouth, traders in neighbouring Lowestoft are also to be asked to vote on having one.


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