PAUL O’BRIEN: Time to turn our attention to autumn

Paul O'Brien
Paul O'Brien

And so the Urban Beach, kiss me quick hats and beach towels have been packed away for another year as we summer season in Worthing came to an end in style with the seafront parade.

We now turn our attention to autumn.

Always a tricky time for retailers to predict with the weather hugely defining which items sell more than others, what clothing ranges shops stock and the general lack of an undercover shopping centre in our town not helping draw people in on those rainier days.

Worthing has always relied hugely on the weather to help trade and talking to the store managers from our larger chains who do stints around the county at different shops, they couldn’t be more honest in saying that when it rains, Horsham, Crawley, Brighton and others take trade away from us with their extra facilities.

Yet when the sun shines Worthing outperforms them, so we have to try and think outside the box when attempting to attract people to our town over the next few months.

I have previously mentioned our fantastic Christmas one-nighter, which is almost complete bar a few sign offs, which should bring Worthing to life in December with our huge plans for the town.

We also have, god willing, fireworks night in November which, for the past two years, has attracted over 20,000 people and hugely helped those businesses that stay open for the evening.

On top of this we have a fantastic food festival coming up in September with celebrity chef Dean Edwards on the demonstration kitchen and plenty of local business signed up ready to cook up a storm from their trading stalls inside the tented village in Steyne Gardens.

On the high street front we have now around a dozen empty shop premises under offer and close to completion meaning we can welcome some new, and returning, faces to our high street over the coming months.

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