Worcester could see late-night shopping all year round

Worcester could see late-night shopping all year round

Worcester could see late-night shopping all year round

First published in News

SHOPPERS in Worcester could soon be able to enjoy Christmas-style late-night shopping all year round.

Speaking at a meeting of Worcester City Council’s cabinet on Tuesday, March 15, Cllr Geoff Williams said members of the authority had been considering plans to introduce year-round late-night shopping one day a week.

Many shops and cafes in the city centre stay open until 9pm on Thursdays in the weeks leading up to Christmas, but if Cllr Williams’ plans are approved this scheme will continue throughout the entire year.

Although the late-night opening will not necessarily happen on Thursday, shoppers will be able to park in city council-run car parks for free if the scheme goes ahead.

Speaking at Tuesday evening’s meeting, Cllr Williams said the idea had been the subject of a great deal of discussion between him and his colleagues on the council.

“What I want to say tonight quite clearly is we want to take this forward,” he said.

“I want to introduce free parking in city for one night a week and I want to take this forward as soon as possible.”

Council leader Cllr Adrian Gregson threw his support behind the idea, saying: “Hopefully it’s something we can take forward.”

Adrian Field, manager of Worcester Business Improvement District – a non-profit organisation working to improve conditions for businesses in the city – said he expected many people would be in favour of the project but it was difficult to tell how successful it would be.

“Traditionally shops are open from 9am until about 5.30pm,” he said. “That’s just what British retailers do.

“How much more trade would businesses do if they stayed open late or maybe even started later?”

He added it would be important a large number of businesses in the city centre got involved in the scheme in order for it to be successful.

“It’s a big project and one that a lot of business in the city would need to get behind,” he said.

“If footfall isn’t quite what they expect in the first few weeks what we don’t want is for all the businesses to drop out.

“It’s going to be a gradual build-up and hopefully it will be a snowball effect.”

But he said he was unsure that it was the right time to try out such a scheme.

“The economy isn’t quite in the right place to try this out right now,” he said.

“It might be a good idea to wait until it’s a bit better.

“I don’t think we’re going to be like Spain, opening at 10 o’clock and then every goes for a siesta – although that would be nice.”

He added incentives for people to come into the city centre such as street entertainment and free parking were an important element of making sure it was a success.

The city council plans is examining the logistics of setting up such a scheme and it is hoped a pilot can be launched as soon as possible.

Comments (15)

Please log in to enable comment sorting

4:48pm Wed 16 Apr 14

i-cycle says...

A great idea that deserves to work.
A great idea that deserves to work. i-cycle
  • Score: 11

5:11pm Wed 16 Apr 14

Worcester Lad says...

Yes a great idea, Friday's would be good as the buses run later ,unless First Bus get a subsidy to provide a service on another night of the week .
Yes a great idea, Friday's would be good as the buses run later ,unless First Bus get a subsidy to provide a service on another night of the week . Worcester Lad
  • Score: 6

8:24pm Wed 16 Apr 14

skychip says...

If only the 44 bus ran later up London Road, think the last bus from town is about 6p.m.
If only the 44 bus ran later up London Road, think the last bus from town is about 6p.m. skychip
  • Score: 7

10:29pm Wed 16 Apr 14

Hwicce says...

i-cycle wrote:
A great idea that deserves to work.
Glad to see you support free packing to bring in more cars to the city :).
[quote][p][bold]i-cycle[/bold] wrote: A great idea that deserves to work.[/p][/quote]Glad to see you support free packing to bring in more cars to the city :). Hwicce
  • Score: -13

11:06pm Wed 16 Apr 14

i-cycle says...

Hwicce wrote:
i-cycle wrote:
A great idea that deserves to work.
Glad to see you support free packing to bring in more cars to the city :).
I always do my own packing!

Seriously I sense you and others think I'm against car use. I'm not. I would however like to encourage more people not use their cars for those shorter journeys and for a whole range of different reasons. The big concern I do have is the increasingly bad attitudes some drivers have towards cyclists who do respect the law and are considerate to other road users.

Late night shopping is a bit of a no brainer. It supports the retailers, it makes it easier to fit around work and child care. Its likely to encourage increased use of restaurants and leisure facilities. Importantly it may help to spread the 'load' on our congested road network that will only get worse (and despite any dulling of the southern or construction of a northern link or a second crossing in the city centre) due to the massive expansion that's planned for Worcester.

You may not share my views, but there does seem to be strong evidence that individuals and society more generally (including motorists) would benefit from more people choosing to use their cars less and either walk or cycle more.
[quote][p][bold]Hwicce[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]i-cycle[/bold] wrote: A great idea that deserves to work.[/p][/quote]Glad to see you support free packing to bring in more cars to the city :).[/p][/quote]I always do my own packing! Seriously I sense you and others think I'm against car use. I'm not. I would however like to encourage more people not use their cars for those shorter journeys and for a whole range of different reasons. The big concern I do have is the increasingly bad attitudes some drivers have towards cyclists who do respect the law and are considerate to other road users. Late night shopping is a bit of a no brainer. It supports the retailers, it makes it easier to fit around work and child care. Its likely to encourage increased use of restaurants and leisure facilities. Importantly it may help to spread the 'load' on our congested road network that will only get worse (and despite any dulling of the southern or construction of a northern link or a second crossing in the city centre) due to the massive expansion that's planned for Worcester. You may not share my views, but there does seem to be strong evidence that individuals and society more generally (including motorists) would benefit from more people choosing to use their cars less and either walk or cycle more. i-cycle
  • Score: 8

9:48am Thu 17 Apr 14

Hwicce says...

But are there really all these people who are going to go out shopping in the evening?

Even if they do, will it just be that they don't buy it on Saturday instead?

There is only so much that people want to buy. I foresee it being like the 24hrs pub opening, everyone will rush out and open at the beginning and then give up after the first few months when they realise the market isn't there. After all there is still a large number of shops that don't open on Sundays because there isn't actually enough trade.
But are there really all these people who are going to go out shopping in the evening? Even if they do, will it just be that they don't buy it on Saturday instead? There is only so much that people want to buy. I foresee it being like the 24hrs pub opening, everyone will rush out and open at the beginning and then give up after the first few months when they realise the market isn't there. After all there is still a large number of shops that don't open on Sundays because there isn't actually enough trade. Hwicce
  • Score: -4

10:53am Thu 17 Apr 14

Jabbadad says...

When we read of the stupid Idea to close the Walk In Health Centre, a late night shopping is also for those who work during the daytime, and is a very good idea which I hope gets the support it deserves. As long as the stores who open late make it possible for their staff to partake perhaps on a rota basis. There could also be many families or those who cannot go shopping due to family commitments who would enjoy a couple of hours shopping. The offer of the Free parking is a bonus, if it's also supported by bus services. Well Done Geoff Williams WCC.
When we read of the stupid Idea to close the Walk In Health Centre, a late night shopping is also for those who work during the daytime, and is a very good idea which I hope gets the support it deserves. As long as the stores who open late make it possible for their staff to partake perhaps on a rota basis. There could also be many families or those who cannot go shopping due to family commitments who would enjoy a couple of hours shopping. The offer of the Free parking is a bonus, if it's also supported by bus services. Well Done Geoff Williams WCC. Jabbadad
  • Score: 4

3:18pm Thu 17 Apr 14

Raniator says...

A good idea but Worcester will need some shops worth visiting for it to work!
A good idea but Worcester will need some shops worth visiting for it to work! Raniator
  • Score: 8

3:56pm Thu 17 Apr 14

Jabbadad says...

Worcester is alight for my shopping requirments. Anything that I can't buy here cannot be a necesity.
Many years ago my mum used to go to Cheltenham shopping, but I am sure she treated it as a day out and I don't see shopping as a therapy .
Worcester is alight for my shopping requirments. Anything that I can't buy here cannot be a necesity. Many years ago my mum used to go to Cheltenham shopping, but I am sure she treated it as a day out and I don't see shopping as a therapy . Jabbadad
  • Score: 3

6:06pm Thu 17 Apr 14

Hwicce says...

I rarely shop in Worcester these days, the shops (not many) that do sell the stuff I want usually don't have it in stock.

There's only so much "if its not on the shelf we haven't got it" I can take.
I rarely shop in Worcester these days, the shops (not many) that do sell the stuff I want usually don't have it in stock. There's only so much "if its not on the shelf we haven't got it" I can take. Hwicce
  • Score: -3

7:30pm Thu 17 Apr 14

DarrenM says...

Its nice they're actually trying a sensible strategy at last, however, how many people want to go High Street shopping at night?

I doubt there's that many people sitting at home at night thinking, "I wish the High Street was open so I could go shopping"

That said it wasn't that many years back the only place open on Sunday was Woolwoorths.
Its nice they're actually trying a sensible strategy at last, however, how many people want to go High Street shopping at night? I doubt there's that many people sitting at home at night thinking, "I wish the High Street was open so I could go shopping" That said it wasn't that many years back the only place open on Sunday was Woolwoorths. DarrenM
  • Score: 1

10:22pm Thu 17 Apr 14

Supporting shops x says...

We opened our independant shop Amorè Home and gifts in the run up to xmas on late nights and only had a handful of customers even then ?? It's hard to trade every day of the week I don't think people will come out, the street we are Pump Street is deserted at 4pm everyone goes home ? I would however support the idea, as long as it advertised well, maybe people would get used a certain late night opening, merry hill does it ?
We opened our independant shop Amorè Home and gifts in the run up to xmas on late nights and only had a handful of customers even then ?? It's hard to trade every day of the week I don't think people will come out, the street we are Pump Street is deserted at 4pm everyone goes home ? I would however support the idea, as long as it advertised well, maybe people would get used a certain late night opening, merry hill does it ? Supporting shops x
  • Score: 2

1:20pm Mon 21 Apr 14

themooman says...

Rubbish idea who wants to go into a charity shop at 8 at night ... What's people thoughts on early morning shopping being available
Rubbish idea who wants to go into a charity shop at 8 at night ... What's people thoughts on early morning shopping being available themooman
  • Score: 1

4:05pm Tue 22 Apr 14

Daisy-D says...

It would be nice to think about the staff who are the one's who will have to work late because some people couldn't possibly shop in the 7 days a week that stores are already open! I work in retail and love my job but I deserve a life too I work pretty much every bank holiday which my husband gets off I also only get one day off for Christmas. I understand that some people would like to shop in the evenings but whenever I worked the late nights in the run up to Christmas no one can in after 5:30pm and was a complete waste of time.
It would be nice to think about the staff who are the one's who will have to work late because some people couldn't possibly shop in the 7 days a week that stores are already open! I work in retail and love my job but I deserve a life too I work pretty much every bank holiday which my husband gets off I also only get one day off for Christmas. I understand that some people would like to shop in the evenings but whenever I worked the late nights in the run up to Christmas no one can in after 5:30pm and was a complete waste of time. Daisy-D
  • Score: 3

7:11pm Tue 22 Apr 14

A Different View says...

Interesting idea, just a couple of comments though....

1) I am not sure Worcester have the right types of shop for this, places like the Bullring would attract people in the evening as they have more desirable shops. One of the reasons I don't shop in Worcester that much is that I can't buy the sorts of things I like. For just general shopping (Boots, Debenhams, WH Smiths etc) is it needed?

2) I notice a couple of comments from shop staff above about how dead it was over Christmas in the evening. I have my own theory about that..... someone produced a load of posters advertising Christmas late night shopping from a certain date (I don't recall the date). We went into town for the first night of this late night shopping to find almost every shop closed. Turns out most didn't start from that week but a week or two later. By that time we were sufficiently annoyed we just went elsewhere. I am sure we aren't the only ones who fall into that category.

I guess on the second point it illustrates that if you are going to try something like this you need the majority of shops to participate and you have to do it from the date advertised, otherwise it will just die off very quickly.
Interesting idea, just a couple of comments though.... 1) I am not sure Worcester have the right types of shop for this, places like the Bullring would attract people in the evening as they have more desirable shops. One of the reasons I don't shop in Worcester that much is that I can't buy the sorts of things I like. For just general shopping (Boots, Debenhams, WH Smiths etc) is it needed? 2) I notice a couple of comments from shop staff above about how dead it was over Christmas in the evening. I have my own theory about that..... someone produced a load of posters advertising Christmas late night shopping from a certain date (I don't recall the date). We went into town for the first night of this late night shopping to find almost every shop closed. Turns out most didn't start from that week but a week or two later. By that time we were sufficiently annoyed we just went elsewhere. I am sure we aren't the only ones who fall into that category. I guess on the second point it illustrates that if you are going to try something like this you need the majority of shops to participate and you have to do it from the date advertised, otherwise it will just die off very quickly. A Different View
  • Score: 1

Comments are closed on this article.

Send us your news, pictures and videos

Most read stories

Local Info

Enter your postcode, town or place name

About cookies

We want you to enjoy your visit to our website. That's why we use cookies to enhance your experience. By staying on our website you agree to our use of cookies. Find out more about the cookies we use.

I agree