News from Gloucester Road Traders' Association - June

June 04 2013

As well as representing our livelihoods, Gloucester Road – the oldest high street in the UK – is a vital and valued part of the community and plays a big role in making the area what it is.

Welcome to the first of the Gloucester Road Trading Association’s columns in Bishopstonvoice. As well as representing our livelihoods, this high street – the oldest in the UK – is a vital and valued part of the community and plays a big role in making the area what it is. Through Bishopstonvoice we will aim to bring you updates periodically on news and developments from the association.
I recently addressed the  Bishopston, Cotham and Redland Neighbourhood Partnership Super Forum, where I talked about the problems facing every high street across the nation and the ideas we have to help Gloucester Road traders meet these challenges.   
The problems facing high streets across the nation have been well documented, such as the impact of the internet and the effects of the recession on shops and small businesses. As an association, we have spoken to traders over the past year to get feedback on how we could help Gloucester Road thrive more than it has done. They have come up with a range of initiatives, including loyalty cards, promoting the area as a destination to draw in more footfall and organising summer and Christmas festivals. We are not short of ideas – but putting those ideas into action is the challenge, with the time and funding needed to implement them.
But if we could set up a Business Improvement District (BID) we could bring in funding and a management company for Gloucester Road could take on the initiatives traders want to see and more. We want to make Gloucester Road more than shopping, to give people that little bit more reason to come here and to make it easier for them to visit. Watch this space…
On another matter, we are all very concerned about the proposals for residents’ parking  zones and we have requested feedback and dialogue from the mayor. This area is unique and we feel it should be treated as such and we will be drawing up a group response ready for consultation for this area.