Shop owners’ bid to revamp Magdalen Street in Norwich

Business owners in Magdalen St, Norwich are hoping to set up a traders association to promote the va

Business owners in Magdalen St, Norwich are hoping to set up a traders association to promote the variety of businesses in the historic trading street.Picture by SIMON FINLAY. - Credit: Archant Norfolk

It's time to put Magdalen Street on the map. That's the message from traders in the Norwich district eager to give their high street a revamp.

Business owners in Magdalen St, Norwich are hoping to set up a traders association to promote the va

Business owners in Magdalen St, Norwich are hoping to set up a traders association to promote the variety of businesses in the historic trading street.Picture by SIMON FINLAY. - Credit: Archant Norfolk

Cafe owner Julian Kitcher, 45, is leading the charge to develop a thriving business community and on the north Norwich street by setting up a Traders' Association.

The dad-of-two of St Olaves Road, Sprowston owns the Jerusalem-themed cafe Ruth's Kitchen on Magdalen Street with his Israeli wife Ruth, 41 and said the street needs attention and cash.

'We want to make people are aware of Magdalen Street, show them that is a friendly and ethnic place,' he said.

'This is the start of something. We are serious about Magdalen Street. We want people to come down here and celebrate what we have got.'


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Along with the other vibrant business owners, including a cafe-come-bike-shop, a renowned fabric store, vintage furniture sellers, and a hairdressers, Mr Kitcher wants to make Magdalen Street a vibrant place again.

The Magdalen Street Celebration, which took place last month, was lauded as a success in celebrating the diversity of the area.

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Hundreds of visitors were drawn to what some call the 'forgotten' part of the city – and it is this kind of exposure Magdalen Street traders hope to replicate. Many praise the success of the Norwich Lanes, a series of medieval streets, alleyways and open spaces, but feel Magdalen Street deserves its own identity and has the potential to become a shopping and eating destination.

But for that dream to become a reality, Mr Kitcher says once the Traders' Association is set up it will need cash and support from Norwich City Council.

'It's a little treasure,' he said. 'But as a group of traders we fell we are being ignored by our own community.

'We really can't afford to do this on our own. We need help from the council and be able to spend some money.'

What's your favourite part of Magdalen Street? Or do you have special memories of it? Write to Evening News Letters, Prospect House, Rouen Road, Norwich NR1 1RE or email eveningnewsletters@archant.co.uk giving your full name, address and contact details.

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