93% of people in Gloucester have voted in favour of plans for the new ultra-modern Next store to be built at Peel Retail Park Gloucester, according to an independent survey.
More than 61% said they would shop out of the city if the store doesn’t open in Gloucester, with 40% saying they would visit Cheltenham instead. The major statistics have been revealed in a report by market research company, DJS Research.*
The planning application for the new store, which forms part of a £14 million regeneration scheme by Peel, is due to go before the City Council Planning Committee on 6 September after months of consultation, which has revealed widespread public support. New CGIs have been released by Peel revealing the eye-catching designs set to bring the “wow factor” to the city.
Roger Wheeldon, director of development at Peel, said: “The people of Gloucester have spoken, and it is clear the vast majority of shoppers are strongly in favour of the new Next store opening. The same level of support was also very clear when we and Next held a public exhibition before jointly submitting the application.
“If this store doesn’t go ahead, a large proportion of shoppers will continue to shop out of the City, travelling unnecessarily to other centres such as Cheltenham and Bristol, and Gloucester will continue to lose trade.
“We are hugely committed to Gloucester and want the city to grow, as demonstrated by over a decade of significant and consistent development and long-term investment. This latest largescale investment will bring Gloucester into the running with these other centres, such as Cheltenham, where it fully deserves to be.”
Creating around 100 new jobs, the new Next store would be one of their new-look “dual-format” stores selling a wide range of clothing as well as furniture. Only a handful of these flagship stores are planned throughout the UK.
Blueprints and CGIs reveal two mezzanine floors covering 28,000sqft and a café with a balcony overlooking the Gloucester & Sharpness Canal.
A spokesperson for Next said: “This is a fantastic opportunity to bring a new, exciting format store to Gloucester to keep people here, rather than travelling to Cheltenham and Bristol.”
Roger Wheeldon added: “Peel has invested more than any other developer in the City and continues to do so and to facilitate others doing so. Combined with existing redevelopment at Gloucester Quays, this scheme would create a fantastic gateway into the city.”
*Survey sample size 1000 respondents