Big names disappear from Chesterfield high street - but marketing chief is optimistic

Chesterfield town centre.
Chesterfield town centre.

A marketing chief has hailed Chesterfield town centre - amid continuing concerns about empty shops on the high street.

On Monday, the Thomas Cook store on Low Pavement became the latest unit to end up vacant after the holiday firm collapsed into liquidation.

The Thomas Cook store, now closed, in Chesterfield town centre

The Thomas Cook store, now closed, in Chesterfield town centre

Earlier this month, the Herbert Brown pawnbrokers in Pavements Shopping Centre ceased trading and the William Hill bookmakers on Stephenson Place also closed its doors.

In this recent online poll on our website, 57 per cent of people said they did not consider Chesterfield town centre to be a good place to shop - and shoppers regularly contact us to complain about the number of empty shops on the high street.

However, Dom Stevens, manager of Destination Chesterfield, is optimistic.

He told the Derbyshire Times: "It is always disappointing to see retailers disappear from the high street and the recent departures are a reflection of the changing retail landscape nationally.

Dom Stevens, manager of Destination Chesterfield.

Dom Stevens, manager of Destination Chesterfield.

"However, Chesterfield is adapting well to this.

"Our shop vacancy rate remains below the national average and there are a number of initiatives in place to further increase footfall in the town centre which will help to attract new businesses.

"Already we are seeing success with town centre events, like the Motor Fest and the forthcoming 1940s market, which bring people into the centre.

"Vicar Lane is offering flexible rents to retailers which has resulted in a number of new independent stores investing and opening in the town.

"There is also interest in a number of the new units in the former Co-op at Elder Way."

Mr Stevens added: "Chesterfield's high street is distinctive and that is to our advantage.

"We have a good mix of independent and chain retailers which, when combined with an events programme and the council's commitment to town centre living and regeneration, is making a very real difference in helping Chesterfield town centre evolve and adapt to meet the needs of consumers."

MORE: Night shelter for Chesterfield's rough sleepers will return this winter - here's how you can help