St Stephens Street shops miss out on jubilee boost as works continue
- Credit: Ben Hardy
Traders on a key city centre street feel like they are missing out on the bumper Platinum Jubilee trade due to major ongoing roadworks.
A £6.1m revamp of St Stephens Street is on track to finish by the autumn, Norfolk County Council has said.
The investment will see new 'sawtooth' bus parking bays and new bus shelters built, a new taxi rank as well as flower beds and trees planted.
But the impact is being felt by businesses along the street on what was expected to be a pivotal weekend of trade nationally.
Will Myers, casino manager at Admiral Casino Slots, said: "I would say we are down 30pc on trade. The roadworks have had a big impact on business.
"I hope the long-term impact on footfall will be positive and it is modernising the city centre to make it look a lot better."
The casino manager referred to the YMCA charity store recently closing down during the works after opening less than a year ago.
Shoe Zone is also closing down in the street soon but a date has not been confirmed at this stage.
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June Blanch, a staff member at independent shoe shop Siddalls, said: "I was not expecting it to be busy this weekend with everyone partying and having fun. I would say trade could be slowing down because of the roadworks too.
"It is not ideal at the moment but it should look nice when the work is done."
Sally Henshaw, assistant manager at Mr Shoes, said trade had been quiet on the Friday of the bank holiday weekend.
She added: "We are obviously looking forward to when the work is finished. Business is really hit and miss at the moment."
The Norwich-based Centre for Retail Research estimated there will be an additional total spending of £408.29m across the country generated by the jubilee.
Martin Wilby, chairman of the Transport for Norwich Joint Committee, has previously thanked the public for their patience and said that he is “delighted” with the progress of the works.
He said the works will "significantly improve the environment for shoppers" while also improving access to bus services.