Window display on town’s history aims to attract more shoppers

Ezra Leverett, a member of the Halesworth Portas Town Team, (centre right) presents a cheque to Bria

Ezra Leverett, a member of the Halesworth Portas Town Team, (centre right) presents a cheque to Brian Holmes, chairman of Halesworth Museum (centre left) joined by other people involved in the windows project. - Credit: Archant

A permanent new window display has been created in Halesworth to give shoppers and visitors an insight into the history of the town's Market Place.

Enlarged archive photos of the Market Place, as well as a timeline and information dating as far back as the 13th Century, was unveiled as part of a display to revitalise the Market Place at Boots pharmacy on Monday.

The project was implemented by the Halesworth Portas Town Team who formed at the start of 2012 in response to a call for towns up and down the country, in desperate need of help to rejuvenate their ailing high streets, to bid for government money and help from retail guru Mary Portas - in which they received a grant of £10,000.

The display, which features photographs from the Halesworth and District Museum, aims to increase footfall in the Market Place.

Sue Allenby, part of the town team, said: 'We wanted to fire people's imagination, and for the two large photographs to draw onlookers into the old Market Place as though they themselves were a part of the scene. The purpose is to bring visitors up beyond the Thoroughfare, Halesworth's main shopping street.'

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The project was supported by the Halesworth and Blyth Valley Partnership (H&BVP), Boots, Market Place traders and Halesworth business EPS Transfers who produced and installed the photographs, along with Vic Gray, publicity officer at Halesworth Museum, who researched the explanatory text for the filmstrip timeline at the bottom of the windows.

Ezra Leverett, a member of the town team and chairman of the H&BVP, added: 'We got the traders in the Market Place together and asked them what they would like to see done.

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'They said that some of the buildings needed improving and they asked for better signage, but one of the things we could do relatively quickly was to contact Boots and turn their blank windows into something more interesting.

'They have already attracted an enormous amount of interest. We hope that people will look at the windows and ask who is in the pictures, when and where were they taken. We will now be looking at other places where we can do a similar sort of thing so we can show how things are today and how they were 100 years ago.'

The town team presented a cheque for £100 to Brian Holmes, chairman of the museum, for their help with the project.

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