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Trade in Bexhill

   Trade in Bexhill -

 

Is Business suffering in Bexhill? 
Of course, but not as bad as some local towns.  There are pockets of empty properties but not too many.  This recession is hitting all of us in business in this country one way or another.  Bexhill is no exception, but we are doing better than many other towns.  Marks & Spencer are now open in Ravenside Retail Park. We hope that Weatherspoons are coming to Western Road.  Great news for our town that the nationals see us as a town worth the investment. 

We have seen the loss of several town centre businesses.   Several are now on the market as retirement sales or the businesses have relocated to other premises in the town as their leases came up for renewal.  Established businesses with years of experience and “padding” to fall back on will continue to survive, particularly those specialist businesses.   Today, and for the near future, we all need some help.

In this downturn it is not just the retailers who have been hurt, the service industries are being hit hard, they tend to be overlooked as they are not as noticeable as the retailers.  Most of us know somebody who has lost their job locally in a service sector such as Banking, solicitors, accountants, hairdressing, media, marketing and advertising.  Interesting to see that our local Estate Agents are now expanding, a good sign that the property market is improving. 

The old saying “Turnover is vanity but profit is sanity” is more relevant today than ever before.

Sackville Road has businesses opening.  Good to see the Antique Dealers moving into the area and hair stylists opening.  Lovely art gallery has opened in Wickham Avenue.  Smaller businesses are continuing to open in most of our trading roads, not with a huge amount of publicity, they don’t have the marketing budgets for this, but they are opening, they do see a future here.

We are a visitor destination, email requests from potential visitors for copies of the Official Guide to Bexhill are continuing to flood in, many of these people are first time visitors.  The requests from Europe are still lower than the past but there are still requests from Germany and the Netherlands.    These visitors spend money, they stay, eat, shop.  Interestingly over 25% of requests for the Bexhill Guide are from people who are investigating moving to Bexhill.

One of the selling points for marketing Bexhill is the amount of owner managed shops that we have in town, visitors to the town find this really interesting and a refreshing change from the shopping malls and the lookalike town centres up and down the country.

Like it or not, we have the most charity shops of any town of similar size in Sussex, Surrey, Hampshire and Kent.  Several coach companies come here each week simply for their passengers to visit DLWP and the "town with all the charity shops".  This should be seen as good news - as these visitors not only buy in our charity shops but they also visit our cafes and other shops.

Parking always causes friction, in every town throughout the country - however we are different.

We should remember and celebrate the fact that we are now one of the last towns in East Sussex to have free onstreet parking for 2 hours, plus we have all of the promenade for unrestricted parking.

We really are the envy of Eastbourne and Hastings with all of this free parking.  Wainwright Road car park,  for £1 a day this is a really good, but underused car park for Town Hall Square and the Western end of town.

If you are interested in opening a business in Bexhill email info@bexhillchamber.co.uk as we have members who may be able to assist you with premises.  We also have lots of information and will be able to answer many of your questions.