Chesterfield residents urged to back local events this summer

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Chesterfield business leaders are urging residents and visitors to support the town's major events and festivals this summer, emphasising their crucial role in sustaining independent traders and enhancing the local economy.

During the recent Destination Chesterfield Round Table discussion organised in collaboration with the Derbyshire Times, local businesspeople in the town’s network of Chesterfield Champions highlighted our area’s charm and historic character as key selling points, making it a unique place to host large events. This summer, several significant events will draw thousands to Chesterfield, including: The Chesterfield Children’s Festival, Chesterfield Pride, The Chesterfield Cycling Festival, Peddler Market and BRM Chesterfield Festival of Cricket

Jordan Hartshorne, Managing Director at Spire Radio highlighted the positive impact of these events on the town centre: “It’s great to see lots of events happening in New Square. It is the perfect place to do things, as it is just the right size and has great proximity to other areas. People are coming back into town because things are going on. We’re seeing more positivity around things taking place in the town centre.”

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James Snipe, Audit and Accounts Manager at Shorts Chartered Accountants also praised the addition of the Peddler Market in Chesterfield: “Peddler has been a fantastic addition. It has been very popular in Sheffield for a long time, and people drive miles to attend it. Now people are coming here to visit it, which is great to see. The wider food and drink offer is definitely improving across the town.”

Peddler Market will return to Chesterfield town centre on July 19 and July 20.Peddler Market will return to Chesterfield town centre on July 19 and July 20.
Peddler Market will return to Chesterfield town centre on July 19 and July 20.

Deon Jacobs of Cawa Bakery emphasised the potential of events to attract long-term visitors and boost the economy: “The Redbrik Chesterfield 10k is a great event. I’d like to see this built upon with more initiatives which see people stay in our town for longer. If you look at cycling events such as the Tour de France and the Tour de Yorkshire, all the towns that those races go through benefit tremendously, from people using hotels, restaurants, and other amenities.”

Mike Jones, Head of Customer Relations for Windowcharm Blinds & Curtains, spoke about the role of events in promoting Chesterfield as a place to visit: “I have a passion for photography, and being able to get out and about to events with my camera is a great way to help with promoting the town. If we have more events on New Square and around the public realm, more people will come in on weekends to take photos and share them. Potential investors can also see that people want to go to Chesterfield, making it a more attractive proposition.”

Delegates at the Round Table also thought that the distinct character of Chesterfield is helping to attract quirky, independent businesses. Cawa’s Deon Jacobs explained: “Creating space for artisan shops provides a great way to increase footfall because you’re creating a destination. We’ve seen this at our shop in Chesterfield Railway Station. The first train in the morning from Sheffield to London stops for 10 minutes in Chesterfield, and we see people getting off the train to spend with us, rather than at a national chain in Sheffield. We’ve seen in our town centre outlet that events such as Peddler make a huge difference in attracting the right audiences.”

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Upcoming regeneration in Chesterfield town centre will pave the way for an improved marketplace, and space to host more unique events. Ryan Smith of Voeberg Hospitality, the developer behind the Holywell Hotel in Chesterfield, was excited by the plans: “The upcoming work to revamp the market will have a major impact. We’re seeing a boom online for people working on side hustles through sites such as Etsy. If we can get the facilities right, we could attract those kinds of people to set up pop-up shops on the market to create a real buzz in the town centre.”

Local business leaders at the round table eventLocal business leaders at the round table event
Local business leaders at the round table event

Recent developments have also seen the creation of new homes in the heart of the town. Windowcharm’s Mike Jones thinks this will have a positive effect, not just on businesses, but on the community feel of Chesterfield: “You see what they have done at Parkhill in Sheffield. That regeneration has created a supportive, tight-knit community, and we can do the same here.”

However, Joby Parsons, Events and Sales Coordinator at West Studios emphasised that local people need to play their part in promoting the town to others: “I think it's important that we continue to encourage people to use local businesses and promote local talent. If we can encourage more people to get to know what businesses and events we do have, we will change perceptions in terms of how people view their hometown in a much more positive way.

“Nobody is going to be a better cheerleader for Chesterfield than the people who live here. If we can change those perceptions locally, people will tell their friends out of town about more of the things happening here.”

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Mike agreed, stating that local people had a huge role in supporting our local businesses: “I think as residents of the town, we can do more to share things that we are passionate about locally. The town needs more ambassadors and leaders to help shout about what we have here. When everyone in the marketplace has a positive vibe, it’s natural that they’re going to share their experiences with others.”

To find out more about how you can make memories with friends and family this Summer, go to: https://www.chesterfield.co.uk/summer/

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