Surrey Heath Borough Council focus on Camberley Town Centre

Surrey Heath Borough Council announce their support for Camberley town centre businesses, driving footfall and bringing enjoyment and festive cheer to shoppers and visitors.

Surrey Heath Borough Council led a festive campaign for Camberley town centre bringing an event to the town centre every weekend throughout November and December 2018 leading up to Christmas.

The event campaign drew on support from the town’s Business Improvement District (BID) ‘Collectively Camberley’, The Square shopping centre, Camberley Theatre and The Atrium; a large centre which is host to shops, a Vue Cinema, soft play and bowling – bringing together cross-town events into one uniquely branded event programme.

Be Enchanted in Camberley’s events were varied and unique.  They included a Christmas Parade with Santa arriving in Camberley in a horse drawn carriage accompanied by local schools, dance groups, gymnastic clubs, faith groups and community groups.  A Nutcracker ballet event was held in The Square shopping centre to coincide with Vienna Festival Ballet’s Nutcracker ballet performance in Camberley theatre.  The event included professional dancers and dances performed by Camberley’s Bluebell Ballet School.  Other events in the Be Enchanted programme included music concerts, carol singing and finding eight reindeer positioned all around town after being decorated by local schools.

In addition to the event programme Camberley’s Santa’s Grotto was given a significant overhaul.  A unit in The Square was transformed into a magical winter wonderland complete with singing penguins, a cosy cottage for Santa and an enchanted forest walkway.  The windows of the former BHS retail unit at Ashwood House were decorated by council staff to create beautiful Christmas displays.  Hillier Garden Centre provided the town with many snowy Christmas trees for Santa’s grotto, winter forest and the children’s Christmas craft area, ’Pixie House,’ in Cambridge Square.

The campaign was enhanced by strong branding and marketing collateral which was created in-house by SHBC and incorporated the town centre partners.  This was supported by an extensive online and offline marketing programme compiled by SHBC, The Square and Collectively Camberley to promote Be Enchanted in Camberley across digital, print, radio adverts, door drops and bus backs.  Secondary catchments were particularly targeted to drive footfall from neighbouring towns including Aldershot, Fleet, Bracknell, Sandhurst and Farnborough.

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‘Off the Grid’ – a new artisan shop in The Square, Camberley

Surrey Heath Borough Council announce that,

‘Off the Grid’ is a new independent pop up shop which has opened in The Square shopping centre on Grace Reynolds Walk for the Christmas period.  It has distinctive and beautiful pieces for sale produced by speciality local artisans.

Cllr Moira Gibson, Leader, Surrey Heath Borough Council said; “Surrey Heath Borough Council has led this project to provide our local small artisan businesses the opportunity to sell their products in a busy town centre location.

The council’s ownership of The Square is enabling us to provide these community focused initiatives, the Ping Pong parlour was another example of utilising units to provide something different and beneficial to Camberley.”

Karen Whelan, CEO, Surrey Heath Borough Council said; “We are so pleased that we are able to provide this opportunity to these unique businesses.  The products available in ‘Off the Grid’ are wonderful and very high quality, the shop is well worth a visit.

The Square shopping centre is also nearing completion of the first phase of its refurbishment.  The new lighting features and the refreshing new light tones of the flooring and décor mean The Square is a much lighter brighter place to visit, shop and enjoy.  The centre also has a really strong retail offer ready for Christmas with House of Fraser, Off the Grid, Jack Wills and many more great brands.”

You will find the following suppliers in ‘Off the Grid’ with more to join soon, Oyster Moon, Mariposa Furnishings, Signare, Lucy With Diamonds, SinahCommon Honey, A Little Trinket, Ashley Jones Cards, Karenza & Co, Rebecca Williams Ceramics, Ellie Reader, and Megan Davies.

‘Off the Grid’ will be open until mid-January 2019. A special opening event is taking place this evening, Thursday 15 November,  6.0 pm until 8.0 pm. Find ‘Off the Grid’ on Instagram – @offthegridcamberley.

Camberley set to inspire – Surrey Heath Borough Council (SHBC) is committed to supporting and regenerating Camberley town centre.  SHBC’s investments have already seen the unique acquisition of The Square shopping centre, commencing its refurbishment programme within the first year of ownership.  Followed by an ambitious set of projects to improve the roads, pavements and street scene.  A redundant office building has also been purchased to create 116 high quality town centre apartments, with proposals to re-deliver new business space.

SHBC is also currently in the process of sourcing an innovative developer partner for the London Road site.  Situated fronting the London Road, opposite the Royal Military Academy Sandhurst, the 5.5-acre site has the potential to create a mixed-use development.

The regeneration work is supported by a comprehensive events programme, grant schemes for independent businesses and cultural and enrichment projects to ensure Camberley is a key destination and experience.   www.camberleybeinspired.com.

House of Fraser in Camberley saved from closure

On 23rd September, Surrey Heath Borough Council announced that,

House of Fraser today announced that its store in Camberley has been saved from closure. The Camberley store, which had previously been earmarked to close under the previous owners, is among a number of House of Fraser stores at which new terms have been agreed with landlords.

Sports Direct are House of Fraser’s new owners and Surrey Heath Borough Council (SHBC) is the landlord of the Camberley House of Fraser.

Karen Whelan, Chief Executive and Cllr Moira Gibson, Leader, SHBC said: “We are firmly committed to a department store remaining part of Camberley’s future.  House of Fraser is very popular with our residents and visitors and is a key retail presence in the town.

We look forward to supporting the store and the management team.  This is also great news for the Camberley House of Fraser’s staff after what must have been a time of great uncertainty.  ”

Sue Mileham, Store Manager at House of Fraser in Camberley, said:  “Our staff are absolutely overjoyed! We are like a family together and we’ve built up great relationships over the years with our customers, who are also delighted. We’ve had people coming up and asking if we are going to be saved, and they are really pleased. It means so much to the town because we are the only department store.”

Camberley set to inspire   

Surrey Heath Borough Council (SHBC) is committed to supporting and regenerating Camberley town centre.  SHBC’s investments have already seen the unique acquisition of The Square shopping centre, commencing its refurbishment programme within the first year of ownership.  Followed by an ambitious set of projects to improve the roads, pavements and street scene.  A redundant office building has also been purchased to create 116 high quality town centre apartments, with proposals to re-deliver new business space.

SHBC is also currently in the process of sourcing an innovative developer partner for the London Road site.  Situated fronting the London Road, opposite the Royal Military Academy Sandhurst, the 5.5-acre site has the potential to create a mixed-use development.

The regeneration work is supported by a comprehensive events programme, grant schemes for independent businesses and cultural and enrichment projects to ensure Camberley is a key destination and experience.  Find out more www.camberleybeinspired.com

Surrey Heath Council attend Revo Manchester, plus Be Inspired video

Surrey Heath Borough Council [SHBC] announce their attendance at Revo Manchester on 18-20th September that offers opportunities to connect and do business with experts from the diverse retail property and placemaking community. See SHBC’s Be Inspired video at end of press release.

The regeneration of Camberley is bringing a revitalised place to one of the most affluent catchments in the South East of England.

Led by a forward-thinking management team and elected members, Surrey Heath Borough Council (SHBC) has invested £140 million into Camberley to drive regeneration and economic growth.

SHBC will be attending Revo Manchester, 18 – 20 September 2018, Manchester Central.  Visit us on stand number 84.

Karen Whelan, Chief Executive, Surrey Heath Borough Council said:  “SHBC’s significant regeneration projects in Camberley are driving prosperity in the town and creating a vibrant place for our local communities to enjoy.   The regeneration work is also creating exceptional new commercial opportunities. Come and see us at Revo to find out more.”

Cllr Richard Brooks, Deputy Leader, Surrey Heath Borough Council said: “We are looking forward to attending the Revo exhibition next week to provide an update on the substantial progress that has been made on Camberley’s regeneration projects.  These projects are transforming the town and creating a great place for our local communities and businesses.”

SHBC’s investments have already seen the unique acquisition of The Square shopping centre, commencing its refurbishment programme within the first year of ownership.  Followed by an ambitious set of projects to improve the roads, pavements and street scene.  A redundant office building has also been purchased to create 116 high quality town centre apartments with proposals to re-deliver new business space.

SHBC is also currently in the process of sourcing an innovative developer partner for the London Road site.  Situated fronting the London Road, opposite the Royal Military Academy Sandhurst, the 5.5-acre site has the potential to create a mixed-use development.

The regeneration work is supported by a comprehensive events programme, grant schemes for independent businesses and cultural and enrichment projects to ensure Camberley is a key destination and experience.

Be involved

  • 19 September 11:30am – 12:30pm, Cinema: Karen Whelan, CEO, SHBC will be participating in the panel discussion ‘Are shops killing the High Street?’
  • 19 September 4pm – 5pm, Stand 84.  Camberley drinks reception. Join us for a glass of Stovells’ Wild-crafted Gin, an artisan gin produced within Surrey Heath in Chobham.  Talk to Officers and Members from SHBC about Camberley and the opportunities available.

Find out more www.camberleybeinspired.com

Watch our ‘Camberley Be Inspired’ short film

Discovering cheeses: So many more British cheeses to taste

In writing about Boy Laity cheese, in my previous article, I obviously looked at the cheesemakers website, and more widely discovered the British cheese awards.

What a surprise in reading about the British Cheese Awards that there were almost 1,000 cheeses entered for the 2018 annual awards, held at the Royal Bath and West Show.

I’ll let you discover the winners in each of the categories. Good to see that Boy Laity was awarded Bronze in category 8: Soft White Cow [up to 500gm]. Oh, and that Marks & Spencer was the Champion Retailer.

The once planned Tesco Express site is being marketed

There’s an estate agent poster, from Brasier Freeth, on the hoarding around 89-91 Guildford Road, what was once an intended Tesco Express store.

Brasier Freeth have a web-page marketing the site as an investment or development opportunity. No price is mentioned on their website. Their site description includes this sentence,

It is considered possible the site may lends itself to residential or retirement housing, subject to the relevant consent.

Neither of these are wanted by local residents. If perhaps it became a bistro I’m sure that would have residents support. Fancy, we once had a DIY/hardware store in the village, only to be replaced by Tesco land-banking the site for years. What a waste.

Tesco’s Express store in Lightwater scrapped

The report of Tesco scrapping their planned Tesco Express store in Lightwater is contained in the Friday issue of The Villager, and on Michael Gove’s website.

There’ll be many residents in Lightwater quietly pleased by this development, though MP Michael Gove, extensively quoted in The Villager’s article on the topic, is disappointed over the decision.

Some may’ve wanted a Tesco Express, me not so. Heck, I’ve argued long and hard at planning application meetings that a store of this kind was not needed in Lightwater. Now, if we could have a car park, that’d be high up on my agenda.

Lightwater is noted, particularly by residents, for having one of everything. We may not have the most attractive village centre, this is countered by us having a Post Office, supermarket, coffee bar, hair salons, barber, Cook shop, petrol station with an M&S Simply Food, independent butcher, newsagents, Boots the Chemist, Pharmacy, library, bookmaker, car sales site, dry cleaner, fish & chip shop, variety of food take-away’s, funeral provider, and of course an obligatory number of estate agents. So, my case has been that a Tesco Express was not needed.

In The Villager, it indicated Michael’s support for the store, not sure if that’s true, as he was pressing Tesco for a decision on their intentions, bearing in mind Tesco’s original planning application was in 2010. Yes, that long ago. Need to know more about the saga, then look HERE.