Retail in Norwich thriving with two new shops opening at the Mall

Business leaders in Norwich said today that the retail sector was thriving, after two new shops opened at a city shopping centre.

Ladies' fashion stores Internacionale and Pepper Tree have both opened at the Mall Norwich in the last month.

Internacionale relocated from St Stephen's Street, while Pepper Tree is a new name to Norwich.

It comes just a few months after Norwich received another boost to its shopping scene when fashion retailer Joules took over a unit in Castle Street, which, over the Christmas period, housed children's toys and gift retailer Letterbox.

The number of fashionable clothes stores that has moved to the city recently also includes Jack Wills, in London Street, and Hollister and Superdry in Chapelfield, and more new shops are soon coming to the shopping centre.

Caroline Williams, pictured, chief executive of Norfolk Chamber of Commerce, said: 'Norwich is bucking the trend and showing the rest of the UK how it is done.

'M&S and John Lewis have already recognised Norwich's potential as a retail centre and there have been a number of new stores opening in Chapelfield recently. These two new signings at Castle Mall give further confirmation that Norwich is leading the way as a major retail centre.'

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Meanwhile, Sheridan Smith, marketing manager at Chapelfield, said she hoped to announce more new shops opening in the next few weeks.

She said: 'We're delighted that Carluccios has just opened on Chapelfield Plain and it is proving extremely popular.

'We are hoping to announce more openings in the next few weeks to further add to the fantastic customer experience at Chapelfield. The fact that the Mall is also attracting new retailers can only be good for Norwich, its residents and visitors to the city.'

David Finlay, the store owner of Pepper Tree, said they had received a fantastic response from shoppers. He said: 'Turnover has far exceeded expectations and we know that we will only increase on this when more additions to stock and further shop-fit designs come in.

'We have been selling Pepper Tree dresses in our Blue Jean Co shop on Lower Goat Lane for a couple of years and this is our first venture into a shopping centre.

'We are the first, stand-alone Pepper Tree Shop in the UK and have had great support from The Mall and Pepper Tree London. The footfall in The Mall has shown that it still is a major destination for the savvy shopper in Norwich.'

A spokesman for Internacionale said its philosophy was to provide the customer with a fabulous fashion buy at a fantastic price and said it was confident its new location and in-store design would provide a great shopping experience for customers.

Victoria Haverson, The Mall Norwich's marketing manager, said: 'We are delighted to welcome Internacionale and Pepper Tree to The Mall.

'Both ladies' wear stores enhance the already wide mix of retailers we have in The Mall and we've had some great feedback from our shoppers. It's really positive news to have both these retailers opening in The Mall and I think it's a sign that the retail trade in Norwich is thriving.'

Are you opening a new business in Norwich? Contact reporter David Bale on 01603 772427 or email