DROITWICH’S new and improved High Street is now open and numerous festive events are being held on Saturday to celebrate the £750,000 revamp.
Following months of roadworks, the popular shopping area will be buzzing with activity as traders promote what the town has to offer.
The Jinney Ring’s Pop Up Christmas shop and Santa’s Post Office will be open from 10am.
At 11am, the Town Crier will lead the procession down the High Street with Santa in his Sleigh and real reindeer, who will then be in Saltbarrow Market until 2pm.
At 11.15am, Santa will unveil his post box in his very own Post Office and Droitwich Salvation Army will play Christmas Carols.
There will be Christmas treats aplenty including beauty sessions by Inspire, children’s fitness sessions with Santa’s Elves by Anytime Fitness and Emm’s Christmas Pom Pom making classes.
Artists from the Canalside Studios will introduce their special Advent Calendar which is spread among the stores in the High Street and shoppers spending £10 or more in any High Street shop during December will receive a £10 voucher for Great Little Breaks. They will also be put in a draw to win prizes such as tickets for Webbs’ ice rink and the Severn Valley Railway.
Throughout December, there will be late night shopping every Thursday with more chances to meet the reindeer and enjoy festive treats with the traders.
The Droitwich Means Business Group in conjunction with High Street traders organised the relaunch and local businesses and Wychavon District Council provided funding.
Vivienne Findlay, the Droitwich Business Group’s joint-chair and managing director of Hotelshopuk Ltd, said they had been very concerned about the loss of trade in recent months but now the work was complete they wanted to help to get the High Street back to business.
“The programme of activity between December 2 and Christmas should help to really promote the High Street as a must-visit shopping destination for local people and visitors.”
The revamp gained £500,000 funding from Worcestershire County Council, £150,000 from Wychavon District Council and Severn Trent Water’s work cost about £120,000.
The improvements included completely reconstructing and surfacing the road, new pavements, a blockwork gateway at either end of the High Street, a raised crossing area for pedestrians and new street furniture.
Coun Richard Morris, portfolio holder for economy and housing at Wychavon District Council, said it had been tough for traders but the work was essential and now the High Street looked great.
“It’s fantastic the traders are coming together to put on an extra event this weekend to enhance our seasonal calendar.
“We have some brilliant shops on offer and I’d encourage everyone to go along this weekend and check them out.
“Festive and long-term support is what our High Street needs and there are so many brilliant shops on offer it isn’t hard to find an excuse to visit.”
Droitwich Spa Mayor Coun Shaun Best thanked everyone, especially the shopkeepers, for their patience during all the disruption and said he hoped the launch would be successful.