Chesterfield man describes town as “dirty, depressing and empty” in response to dream high street survey

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A Chesterfield man has described the town as “dirty, depressing and empty” after reading the results of a national survey which asked Brits to picture their dream high street.

John Hunt made the comments after seeing the Smart Energy GB survey – which found the perfect street contained a deli, a florist, an ice cream parlour, a record store and a pharmacy.

Speaking about Chesterfield, Mr Hunt said: “What is Chesterfield doing wrong? All I read about is planning for more apartments, restaurants and office space we can’t fill now.

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"It makes me so sad to go into town. My three words to describe Chesterfield would be dirty depressing and empty.”

High Street, ChesterfieldHigh Street, Chesterfield
High Street, Chesterfield

The national survey found 62 percent of respondents believed a good high street has a mixture of modern and traditional shops.

Ninety-eight per cent said the high street had changed dramatically over the last ten years - with three quarters (74 per cent) claiming it has gotten worse and 91 percent seeing shops close.

Despite this, over half (54 percent) think that a thriving high street is an important part of building a community and that local, independent enterprises help create a sense of unity (50 percent).

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Speaking about his own experience in Brampton Mr Hunt described scenes of “dumped freezers” and “broken beer bottles”, adding: “The point I am making is the disgusting state of our once proud Chesterfield.”

According to the survey over half (54 percent) of respondents said they were visiting the high street less now than they did five years ago.

Twenty-nine percent of small business owners said they were reviewing business costs this year - with 20 per cent saying that reducing their energy costs was a main priority.

Victoria Bacon, Smart Energy GB, said: “It is heartening to see people are proactively supporting small businesses on their local high streets. We know business owners have had to work really hard, especially over the past couple of years, to manage their running costs.

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"One small thing they can do is get a smart meter installed, which can help them track their energy use and costs over time, control costs and manage cash flow.”

The most sought after shops in the survey were as follows:

Pharmacy – 58%

Fruit and Veg shop / Grocer – 55%

Fish and chip shop – 55%

Butcher – 50%

Independent bookshop – 48%

Hair salon – 48%

Gift and card shop – 46%

Pub – 45%

Florist – 45%

Ice cream parlour – 41%

Deli – 38%

Farm shop – 37%

Vintage/second hand shop – 37%

DIY shop – 37%

Record/music shop – 37%

Barber shop – 36%

Health food shop – 35%

Chinese restaurant – 34%

Chocolatier – 33%

Arts and crafts – 33%

Travel agent – 33%

Artisan coffee shop – 33%

Arts and crafts shop / bakery – 33%

Off licence – 31%

Cheesemonger – 29%

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