Eastbourne Arndale - Eastbourne
Eastbourne Arndale provides the main shopping offer in the town. It is anchored by M&S, Primark and Bhs. The Centre opened in 1980 and has a number of smaller units which were inappropriate for many national retailers. The success of a local jeweller within the Centre provided confidence to explore a localism initiative and add more independent retailers.
Attracting strong independent retailers to the Centre would minimise voids, add a vibrancy and point of difference to the retail offer, and support local aspirations for Eastbourne to avoid the ‘clone town’ label.
FSP worked with the Centre Manager to identify appropriate retailers within the town. Meetings were held to discuss the opportunity and gain a full understanding of the target retailers’ business model. The importance of partnership and support was stressed. Subsequently a recommendation document was produced to inform the centre’s Asset Manager including recommendation on lease terms.
Four new stores opened in July 2012 – Inspired by Brufords, Honey, The Very Nice Handbag Company and Funky Viking. For Ashley Pugh, Inspired is the second shop to open in the Arndale Centre and a third store for the town. It is also the second store for The Very Nice Handbag Company whose owner Bob Smith has a another shop in Cornfield Road.
Young fashion store Honey, and Funky Viking which offers children’s haircuts and children’s clothes and toys both moved from elsewhere in the town as their previous leases expired. Local response was very positive and PR for the Centre included a visit from the local MP in support of the localism initiative.