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Food Festival Serves Up Treat for Stratford

23
Sep 2021
 

Stratford-upon-Avon Food Festival (September 18 and 19) was the town's first major post-pandemic event.

It proved a real tonic for the town with crowds out on both days to enjoy the celebration of Stratford’s food and drink scene. 

Over 110 stalls in Bridge Street, High Street and Henley Street, free cookery and drinks demonstrations, workshops and tastings from some favourite Stratford businesses, plus live music in High Street and Bell Court, made the event go with a swing.

Positive vibes were felt around town with crowds on both days and the food market and the town’s pubs, cafes and restaurants doing brisk trade.

Stratforward marketing and events manager Tor Wilkes said: “There was a real buzz in town with many happy faces! People said how good it was to see Stratford as it used to be, with people together, supporting town and our fantastic food and drink businesses.  

“Fabulous free demonstrations covered a wide range of subjects from sourdough with Mor Bakery, wine and food pairings with Veeno, Gin Bingo with Shakespeare Distillery and bubble juice with Bobapom. Sunday’s hands-on workshops in Bell Court had something for all ages, including painting ceramics with The Spotted Treehouse, making toffee apple fudge with Roly’s Fudge, pizza flairing from Pizza Express and even wine tasting with Welcombe Hills Vineyard.”

Food market traders came from near and far with more than 50 per cent being familiar names to Stratford such as Barry the Butcher, the Giggling Squid, the Crowne Plaza and Monsoon Estates Coffee. Stalls were laid out in a way to create a sense of space and to allow businesses such as Bardia’s and York to run their great outdoor spaces.

Tor added: “This is our first Food Festival in two years and it’s brilliant to be back. We are delighted to be able to stage an event for our town and community.

“We are grateful to the 420 Stratford town centre businesses that fund Stratforward which made this event possible, to the highly skilled chefs, talented musicians, and the significant events team including security, traffic management, police, volunteers, first aiders, Stratforward staff and the event sponsors, Loxleys Restaurant and Wine Bar, for their support. Put a date in your diary for next year’s festival - 17 & 18 September.”

Dave Joynes, Director of Cotswold Markets co-organised the Food Festival, said: “Cotswold Markets is absolutely delighted to have been part of Festival. It is the best to date and we would like to thank the traders, customers and our partners Stratforward BID for helping to deliver such a great event.”

Loxleys director and general manager Jonathan Lea said: “We’re really proud to have sponsored such a great event for Stratford yet again. It was wonderful to see so many people out and about and enjoying themselves again, both at the festival itself and at the businesses in the town across the weekend.  We hope this will be an ideal lift-off for Stratford as we head towards autumn and the all-important Christmas season!”

 

        Gin Go Bingo with Shakespeare Distillery                                                                                

   

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Editor’s notes:

1. For Stratforward’s photography from the event, go to: https://www.dropbox.com/sh/lo9w5fipfvud7x6/AAAlUXf9udVJ2d5SDc_RZH0xa?dl=0

2. For further details, contact: Tor Wilkes tor@stratforward.co.uk 

3. Stratforward is Stratford’s Business Improvement District (BID) which represents 420 shops, cafes, pubs, restaurants and businesses in Stratford town centre.

4. Loxleys is a family-run, two-floor restaurant and bar on Sheep Street in Stratford-upon-Avon. Serving creative British cuisine seven days a week.

5. For further information, go to: 

www.stratforduponavonfoodfestival.co.uk 01789 299011

Love Stratford-upon-Avon (@stratforward) • Instagram photos and videos 

Stratforward BID - Home | FacebookStratforward BID (@Stratforward) / Twitter 

Who Shone in their Response to Covid? Nominate now!

21
Sep 2021

Stratford Herald has launched awards to recognise the achievements of the district’s businesses over the past 18 months.


The Stratford Herald Covid Response Awards will be a celebration of the positives to flow from the hardship, isolation, loss and worry caused by the coronavirus. There are eight categories covering a wide range of areas and they are open to all businesses, no matter how large or small.

Take a minute to enter, or nominate a worthy business or person.

Their panel of independent judges will be waiting to receive your entries.


Each entry will be measured against the category criteria and the judges' selected finalists will be announced in the Stratford Herald ahead of the awards ceremony on 25th November at Alveston Manor.


To find out more and to enter go to: www.iliffemediapromotions.co.uk/covid-response-awards/ 

 

 

Eat, Drink and Be Merry at the Food Festival

09
Sep 2021

Stratford-upon-Avon Food Festival returns for a celebration of the town’s food and drinks scene

The Festival takes place on Saturday and Sunday, September 18-19, with an action-packed programme of demonstrations, workshops and tastings, featuring some of the town’s best-loved names.

 

The food market will feature over 110 stalls in Bridge Street, High Street and Henley Street, adding up to a welcome return for one of Stratford’s most popular events.

After the vagaries of the past 18 months, organisers Stratforward - funded by 420 businesses in the town centre - and sponsors Loxleys Restaurant and Wine Bar, are ready to remind people of the quality of Stratford’s food and drink offering, while giving producers from the area and further afield chance to add to the occasion.

Stratforward marketing and events manager Tor Wilkes said: “We know people are ready for a day out and are delighted to bring back an event that is great fun and puts the spotlight on the hospitality businesses at the heart of Stratford. It is a chance for our cafes, pubs and restaurants to remind everyone of the remarkable variety of food and drink on offer in the town, as we look to a brighter future. Between our established businesses - many of whom are sharing a few of their secrets in the demonstration or workshop sessions - and the wide-ranging stalls taking part, you will probably want to be in Stratford on both days, to make sure you don’t miss out!”

The festival runs from 9-6pm on the Saturday and 10am-4.30pm on the Sunday. 

Demonstrations

The demonstrations in the Bridge Street Cookery and Drinks Theatre kick off at 10.30am on Saturday and 11am on Sunday and have a different programme on each day - and you can just turn up for any or all of the sessions.

Saturday starts with Sour Dough Drama from Mor Bakery, with further insights from Hotel du Vin, Loxleys, Salt and Wildwood to follow - and Shakespeare Distillery rounding off the day with a combination of gin tasting, a talk and a game of bingo with gin-themed prizes. The Embankment launches Sunday’s programme with Paella Perfect, before handing over to Veeno, HR Coffee Bar, The Fourteas and, finally, Bobapom, who will show how to create stunning bubble drinks.

 

Workshops

The workshops are just on the Sunday, in Bell Court, with sessions on the hour from 11am featuring Pizza Express showing how to flare a pizza; The Spotted Treehouse with ceramic painting; Ask Italian running a pizza masterclass; Roly’s Fudge getting you to make toffee apple fudge for kids and Vin Neuf rounding things off with a masterclass in wine tasting. These sessions can be booked in advance at the Cookery Theatre, or you can take a chance on turning up.

 

Live Music and Stalls

Bell Court and High Street will also host live music, while the food market will ensure you will have plenty to try throughout the festival. Familiar names having a stall include Barry the Butcher, the Crowne Plaza, Giggling Squid, Shakespeare Distillery, Hotel du Vin, Monsoon Estates, Noble Leaf, The Little Gin and Rum Company, The Warwickshire Chilli Tree, Vinegar Tips and Welcombe Hills Vineyard. And for animal lovers, Sniff and Bark will have pet treats and toys on offer.

There are also stalls from Kineton, Shipston, Studley, Newbold and Warwick, plus a host of others from across the country.

Tor added: “It all adds up to a happy return for our event, thanks to the support of our BID members and sponsorship from Loxleys, who are also extending their support of the local community to Stratford children's charity, Lifespace.  They provide one-to-one mentoring for children and young people to reduce distress, build resilience and enable them to achieve more.

 

Find out more

To find out more go to www.stratforduponavonfoodfestival.co.uk Pick up a food festival guide in town or view on our website.  Be reassured there will be covid and security precautions in place and the Park and Ride will be open both days.  We look forward to seeing you in Stratford on September 18 and 19, for this uplifting occasion.  

 

“Let us eat, drink and be merry together!”

 

Notes

 
 
1. Attached are images for media use of Stratforward BID.  David Pearson Baker and Owner of Mor Bakery and Tor Wilkes Marketing and Events Manager.
2. For further details, go to 
a. www.stratforduponavonfoodfestival.co.uk  01789 299011
b. Love Stratford-upon-Avon (@stratforward) • Instagram photos and videos 
c. Stratforward BID - Home | Facebook
d. Stratforward BID (@Stratforward) / Twitter 
Or contact Tor Wilkes tor@stratforward.co.uk
 
3. Loxleys the Food Festival Sponsor, is a family-run, two-floor restaurant and bar on Sheep Street in Stratford-upon-Avon. Serving creative British cuisine seven days a week, it is recognised as one of the top restaurants in Stratford.  Loxleys Restaurant and Wine Bar | Loxleys Restaurant and Wine Bar Stratford Upon Avon
4. There is no taste or ale trail year this year due to covid precautions. Usually 1000 people take part, each visiting about 8 venues.  However Stratford’s local CAMRA group has created some suggested venues to visit as part of the Festival. Visit www.stratforward.co.uk for more information. 
5. Stratforward is Stratford’s Business Improvement District (BID) which represents 420 shops, cafes, pubs, restaurants and businesses in Stratford town centre.
 

Stratford's Food Festival is bouncing back!

23
Jul 2021

The popular free Food Festival is returning to Stratford this September – the first festival to be held in town since the pandemic started.   

Fantastic food and drink in all its glorious forms will be on offer on September 18 and 19, in a series of events on Bridge Street, High Street and Henley Street. 

This year there will be a strong local flavour, with over 50% of stalls locally based, as well as cookery demonstrations and workshops in Bell Court.  

Loxleys Restaurant and Wine Bar will once again be the main sponsor. Restaurant director Jonathan Lea said:

“We’re delighted to be back as the main sponsor of the food festival in Stratford. It’s a great event for the town and one we’ve supported for several years.  We’re also glad to be able to announce our support over the next year for Lifespace, a local children’s charity - something very close to our heart as a family-run business. Lifespace provides one-to-one mentoring for children and young people in the Stratford on Avon area to reduce distress, build resilience and enable them to achieve more.”

On the menu at this year’s event are demonstrations including cocktail making from The Fourteas, as well as a host of other classes from MOR Bakery, The Woodsman, Shakespeare Distillery, Stratford Music Café, Diana’s Tearoom and Loxleys. 

Festival-goers can also get their teeth into pizza-throwing fun from Pizza Express and workshops with The Spotted Treehouse, Roly’s Fudge Pantry and local wine merchant Vin Neuf.  

Tor Wilkes, Marketing and Events Manager for Stratforward BID, which organises the event, said: 

“We are very much looking forward to the Festival to highlight Stratford’s vibrant food and drink scene and encourage people back to town. This has been a tough time for most, especially for hospitality businesses, and we’re urging everyone to come out in force and give support.  

Preparations for the food festival are Covid considerate and will be fully compliant with Covid restrictions. Taste and Ale Tails will not take place due to Covid considerations. 

We are closely watching government advice and liaising with the local authorities to ensure a safe enjoyable event. Security will be on hand for added reassurance.” 

Interesting stalls to take note of this year include the exceptional MOR Bakery, Barry the Butcher, The Shakespeare Distillery, Cosy Chic Pet Boutique, and the food category winner of the National Youth Market Final, as well as many local producers.   

To keep up to date please follow @stratforward on Instagram and Facebook or visit the website www.stratfordtowncentrefoodfestival.co.uk  

 

Press release written by Karen Welsh on behalf of Stratforward. Please contact 07969 992416, karenpwelsh@gmail.com with any queries. 

Photo Loxley: Restaurant director Jonathan Lea, Stratforward BID Marketing and Events Manager Tor Wilkes, Lifespace CEO Rachel Key, and Loxleys waitress Lauren Sanghera

Notes

RSC Costume Day Trail

05
Jul 2021

On Friday 20th August the RSC are taking over the Bancroft Gardens to celebrate the newly re-opened Costume Workshop on Waterside. It will be a free festival of costume making through the ages and aims to attract local residence to the town to discover more about the heritage of costume making in our town. 

To promote the day and to encourage people through the whole town, we will be creating a trail of RSC costumes in the windows of shops and businesses and inviting people to go inside and find out more. 

The RSC will aim to tailor the item to your business, so a shoe shop could have an extravagant pair of shoes, or a bakery, a baker’s hat. There will also be a fun element as part of the trail, with an item to be found such as a golden button! All participating businesses will be named on the RSC website and identified on a trail map. 

The item will be brought to you, ready dressed between the 11th and the 13th August, you will display it between the 13th and the 22 August and the item will be collected on the 23 August  

Choice of items 

  • Mannequins approx. 5ft 5in in height and 2ft base (could be adjusted) 
  • Pair of shoes 
  • Head and shoulder mannequin e.g. for hat or jewellery 

If you would like to take part, please reply to threads@rsc.org.uk with the following information by end of FRIDAY 9 JULY: 

  • The name and address of your business
  • Whether you can accommodate a full-size mannequin or a single item (see approx. sizes above) 
  • If you like the item to link to your business if possible? 
  • If you place an approx 30cm diameter sticker in your window?  if not, the costume will have a tag attached to it instead.

Join in the UK Indie Day and Shop Local

29
Jun 2021

Shop Local this weekend for UK Independents’ Day

Make the most of Stratford’s amazing independent shops this weekend and support the national campaign around independence day  - July 4th 
#UKIndieDay

Independent retailers makes Stratford unique and gives us something to love that can only be found here. They set our community apart. 

Check out some of Stratford's independents.  There are links to their websites too so either pop in this weekend or support them online!

Check out Stratford’s town centre guide produced by ‘Local Rewards’, which includes the businesses where you can earn points for shopping locally.

Find out more  

This year is key for indie retail, as businesses look to rebuild following the pandemic. 

Shop local to:

 -> Discover fresh and exciting products on your doorstep

 -> Support your local high street and improve the local economy

 -> Help create more local jobs in your community

 -> Enjoy great customer service from people who value your custom

 -> Build friendships with local shop owners

 -> Touch and feel the products to make sure you make a good choice

 -> Get dedicated help and support making your product selection

 -> Give your shop owners feedback about products you’d like them to stock

 -> Know your local shop will give you a warm welcome!

Thank you for supporting independent retailers. Trading remains a challenge and with your support our local shops will survive and thrive.

 

Business News 25th June

25
Jun 2021

With less than 4 weeks until the schools break up on Wednesday 21st July for the six weeks of summer holidays we hope you are getting into the summer vibe!

Get Involved in the Stratford Food Festival, September 18th & 19th 2021
With a little over 80 days until this important event, now is the time for your business to get involved.
Click here for more information and the application form. Prices will vary depending on the type of stall you need and  the location of the stall.

Sign up to perform a demo in the Cookery Theatre. Email Tor@stratforward.co.uk.

Business Rates Holiday Ends and Reduced Rates Introduced
As a warning, the Council will be sending out new business rates bills next week, as the business rates holiday ends at the end of June.
But there will be 66% business rates relief from the 1st July 2021 to 31st March 2022 for those eligible. Find out more
The council has handled over £72million of grants offering support during the pandemic.

Retail Crime #ShopKind – Request your Crime Prevention Pack
Following on the increase in violence and abuse against shop workers, a crime prevention pack has been created for retail and licensed premises in Stratford to provide support and advice.
 
Here is a link to a video and more information can be found here.

European Union Settlement Status!  Act now
If you have EEA national employees who have not yet applied for settled status, it is important that they do so before the 30th June because the grace period for the EU Settlement Scheme ends.

Either they or you, need to attend one of the sessions below for support.  
Sign up to one of these sessions if you have any queries about how to apply.
Book your ticket for 25th June 202129th June 2021 or 30th June 2021

Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme
From 1st July 2021, the government will pay 70% of wages up to a maximum cap of £2,187. Get the most up to date information

Additional Restrictions Grants – check to see if your eligible
As Step 4 of the roadmap out of restrictions has been delayed for up to 4 weeks the ARG guidance for Local Authorities has been updated and the spending allocation deadline extended to the 30th July.
Support is there for businesses severely impacted by restrictions, including those outside of the business rates system …

‘’sectors that remain closed or are severely impacted by the extended restrictions, even if those businesses have already been in receipt of Restart Grants. There is no restriction on the number of grants a business may receive.  This includes travel and tourism, wedding industries, nightclubs, theatres, events industries, wholesalers, English language schools, breweries, freelance and mobile businesses. ‘’


Eviction Protection Extended
Businesses that have had to remain closed during the pandemic and are unable to pay rent on their commercial property will continue to be protected from eviction.
Landlords are expected to make allowances for the ring-fenced rent arrears from these periods of closure due to the pandemic and share the financial impact with their tenants. 
The legislation will help tenants and landlords work together to come to an agreement– this could be done by waiving some of the debt or agreeing a longer-term repayment plan. This agreement should be between the tenant and landlord and, if an agreement cannot be made, the law will ensure a binding arbitration process.  
Existing measures in place to protect commercial tenants from eviction is extended to 25th March 2022. 
 
Indie Day UK – get involved on July 3rd & 4th
Next weekend is Independents’ Day UK, an annual campaign that encourages people to shop at independent retailers.

We will be running a social media campaign for Stratford independent businesses so please let us know if you would like to be featured, info@stratforward.co.uk

Please also help promote the campaign by:

  • Displaying the shop window poster which highlights shopping local
  • Follow, like and share @ukindieday on Twitter and Instagram, and Independents’ Day UK on Facebook.
  • Add news about Independents’ Day to your newsletters, website, events calendars etc.
  • Take part in the Local Rewards Champions programme

Contact team@indiedayuk.org with questions

Funeral and Commemorative Events
Rules on funerals and commemorative events like weddings, have changed and the number of attendees is now determined by how many people the venue or outdoor space can safely accommodate with social distancing measures.
  
Stratford’s Levelling Up Fund Application
An application has been made by Stratford District Council with support from us and other stakeholders to apply for significant funds from central governments ‘Levelling-Up Fund’. 
‘Our bid is ambitious and is significant at both regional and national level.’  Read more

RSC Summer Activities
Free Bancroft Family Activities
The RSC have commissioned a series of Summer family activities in a bid to attract people back into the town with free pop-up performances, interactive workshops and outdoor performances. 
Running for four weeks from 27 July-20 August on the Bancroft Terrace and across the Garden Theatre. 

  • Tuesdays, brush up on your stand-up with a programme of fun, interactive sessions inspired by comedy and clowning.
  •  Wednesdays, pop-up performances inspired by their history of costume-making, accompanied by a free craft workshop.
  • Thursdays, free musical performances open to all.
  • Fridays, a community led interactive warm-up in the Garden Theatre

Costume Day 20 August
Celebrate the importance of costume-making heritage to Stratford. Free pop-up performances, workshops and family-friendly activities taking place across the town with further details soon to be confirmed. 

Euro 2020 Cup
Dates are

  • Round of 16 - 26th, 27th, 28th & 29th June. England v Germany is Tuesday 29th
  • Quarter Finals - 2nd & 3rd July
  • Semi Finals - 6th & 7th July
  • Final - 11th July

What's New? June 18th

18
Jun 2021

What's New - June 18th?

Things are definitely more like normal, and people are enjoying the sunshine in Stratford this week despite Boris's unwelcome news.

Good News 

Time for a Paddle! 
Stratford District Council have announced that Stratford’s much loved paddling pool will reopen at Stratford Recreation playground 7 days a week until the end of August.
  
RSC Costume Workshop
The RSC Costume Workshop is now open to the public for the first time after a major refurbishment. It is the largest in-house costume-making department of any British theatre. Get a glimpse at the skills used every day to create RSC costumes. 
 
Welcome Back to New Place 
Shakespeare’s New Place and Anne Hathaway’s Cottage, reopened once again on Monday, 14 June for the first time since the pandemic hit in March 2020. Woohoo! Excellent for Stratford to have three Shakespeare properties open.  
  
The Fred Winter Centre (FWC) 
The FWC opens in Stratford Town Centre this September. It is a Housing Plus Centre drawing on best practice to address under one roof all the needs of people who are homeless or at risk of homelessness. Located at 41 Guild Street, the Fred Winter Centre and its board are keen to work closely with local businesses, professional organisations and community groups. They aim to create voluntary and paid work experience opportunities for the residents and clients, and to be part of the economic development of the town and support the future well-being of local people affected by the pandemic.  Read more here.  info@springhousing.org.uk 

Vacancy Advertising 
If you are looking for a new job, keep an eye on our dedicated vacancy webpage 

News for Businesses

Support For Businesses (announced 16 June 2021)
Eviction protection will be extended for businesses most in need. New rules will be established to ringfence COVID-19 commercial rent arrears and guide tenants and landlords to agree repayment plans. Measures to protect commercial tenants will be extended until the new rules come into force. Find out more.
 
Roadmap To Ease Lockdown Restrictions Update Prime Minister’s Statement 14 June 2021
The Prime Minister has announced there will be a four-week pause at step three of the Government’s roadmap to ease lockdown restrictions. It is expected that England will move to step four on 19 July, though the data will be reviewed after two weeks. Government will monitor the data and the move to step four will be confirmed one week in advance. Read the Prime Minister’s statement.

Traffic Safety Scheme Lifting Delayed
Plans to remove the temporary measures introduced to support the safe reopening of businesses in and around Stratford town centre have been paused following the Prime Minister’s announcement. 
To minimise disruption, the works on Bridge Street are now scheduled to take place overnight from 19-21 July. High Street will fully reopen to traffic on 19 July.
Read more on our website.

Apply now for the Restart Grant   
The Restart Grant Scheme supports businesses in the non-essential retail, hospitality, leisure, personal care and accommodation sectors.  Applications close on 30 June. 

Road to Tourism Recovery
The Government has just issued a UK Tourism Recovery Plan which recognises the economic potential of the sector, sets out a clear policy direction for the future and outlines the ambitions for domestic and international tourism .   Also the Government has launched its refreshed the GREAT brand to invite the world to embrace fresh perspectives of Britain. 

Get in touch if you have any questions info@stratforward.co.uk 

Do follow us on instagram for all our updates.
 

Shop Local

17
Jun 2021

Shop Local – show some love!  - Help our High Street Bounce Back


Let’s hit the high street, support our local businesses and get back to the way of life we have sorely missed.  (Yes that’s an excuse err great reason, to enjoy some retail therapy/time in the pub!) Shopping local helps support the local economy, creates jobs and boosts our local community.  It's wonderful and uplifting to see many relaxed and happy people returning to Stratford creating positive vibes.
Businesses have adapted again and again as the rules changed at the drop of a hat and have measures to protect customers and make Stratford a good place to go with safety measures.

From popping into an artisan bakery for a loaf of the freshest bread, or buying a quirky gift from an independent shop, enjoying a local restaurant,  a decent pint in the pub, by shopping locally we can help local business owners and our communities get back up and running.

As a reminder here are reasons to choose to use the high street!

1. Support post pandemic recovery and the local economy
Your country needs you! Do your do bit to aid our national recovery by pumping money into the Stratford’s economy via our local shop, restaurant, café or pub!

2. Save jobs – and create more!
Supporting our high street will creates jobs  helping people find employment – your neighbours, friends and family. More jobs makes for a better place to live and work

3. Great deals
Be pleasantly surprised at the competitive prices . Independents tend to give personal service and often reward regulars, and great deals that can’t be found in major outlets – so save money as you spend!

4. A safe way to shop
Feel safe while you shop, as measures are in place with customer limits, for example, in store, plastic partitions at tills and hand sanitizing stations. 

5. Preserving the heart of our community
Generate revenue to support council services such as libraries, parks and roads that benefit the community.

6. Spoilt for choice
Enjoy a great range of unusual and unique products that bring much-needed originality that you cant get elsewhere. 

7. A better shopping experience
Experience buying locally from a friendly face for a dose of normality that has been missed.

It’s important to acknowledge the ‘A’ word here!   Amazon.  
So many have developed an ‘Amazon habit’.  The antidote is shopping local!

From corner shops and florists, to newsagents, cafes and pubs, our high streets are at the heart of our community.

Small businesses are the beating heart of communities and town centres up and down the country, and they will be at the centre of the recovery.  They supported the nation during lockdown and now they need our support to get back on their feet.

It’s crucial more than ever to support our local small businesses. The past 15 months have been among the most difficult businesses have ever had and people can help by supporting their local businesses. We all need the support of our communities in order to survive this crisis and thrive.

Small businesses are the backbone of our economy and the cornerstones of our local communities.  Thank you for your ongoing support of our precious town centre businesses. 

#ShopLocal 

Temporary Road Measures to Stay in Situ for Longer

16
Jun 2021

Lifting of Stratford Town Centre COVID-19 Safety public space reallocation measures to be paused in line with Government roadmap

Plans to remove the temporary measures introduced to support the safe reopening of businesses in and around Stratford town centre have been paused following the Prime Minister’s announcement that restrictions on social contact will remain in place beyond the original date of 21 June.

Works to remove these schemes are now scheduled to be carried out on a revised date of 19 July.  

At the last regular review meeting between Warwickshire County Council, as the Highway Authority, Stratford-on-Avon District Council and Stratford-upon-Avon Town Council, the decision was taken to remove the temporary measures on and around 21 June, the original date when all restrictions were scheduled to be fully eased.

However, with concerns around the Delta variant delaying the national roadmap out of lockdown, the measures will remain in place pending Government guidance on when it will be safe to remove them.

The temporary scheme, which has been adapted throughout the year in line with changing guidance and needs of local businesses, included the introduction of barriers on Bridge Street to increase space for pedestrians and shoppers and suspension of parking on the street.  High Street has seen timed closures between 11am-6pm.

To minimise disruption, the works on Bridge Street are now scheduled to take place overnight from 19-21 July. High Street will fully reopen to traffic on 19 July.

Councillor Wallace Redford, Warwickshire County Council’s portfolio holder for Transport and Planning, said:

“Throughout the lifespan of this scheme we have been ready to adapt swiftly to changing Government guidance.  That remains the case and while there is concern over the rate of spread of the Delta variant, we need to do all that we can to support social distancing which remains key to limiting the spread of the virus. We have been clear that this would guide our timeline for removing the measures in the town centre. That does mean, though, that our initial plans to remove the scheme will need to be rescheduled.

“We would like to reassure all businesses and those who use the town centre that we will undertake this work as soon as the Government’s guidance indicates that it is safe to do so.  At present, that date is the 19th July and that is what we will be working towards. We would like to thank all partners for their patience and support.”

Daren Pemberton, portfolio holder for Place and Economy at Stratford District Council, and Kevin Taylor, Mayor of Stratford-upon-Avon Town Council, both totally agree with the stance taken by WCC today and said:

“We must continue to observe the government’s timeframe whilst living as normal a life as possible during the continued restrictions.  The measures were put in place to keep us safe and it would be irresponsible to remove them whilst social distancing is still paramount.”

Local partners announced, when the initial date of 21 June was pencilled in for the full removal of measures that, while the removal of the scheme will see a return to pre-pandemic traffic management, there is an early opportunity to make some of the benefits realised over the last 12 months permanent.

The temporary speed reduction in and around the town centre to 20mph, will be made permanent, having met with a high level of approval among local residents and businesses.  The necessary legal process to obtain a Traffic Regulation Order has been started and is being funded through a S.106 developer contribution by Pragnells Ltd.

In addition, the feedback of businesses on High Street who have benefitted from the timed closure of High Street, allowing extra space for tables and chairs outside, has been very positive.

Those businesses looking to apply for a street café licence should go to https://www.warwickshire.gov.uk/cafelicence, those looking for a pavement licence should go to https://www.warwickshire.gov.uk/licences-businesses/apply-pavement-licence-outdoor-seating/1 while parking bay suspension guidance can be found at https://www.warwickshire.gov.uk/parking after the temporary timed closure comes to an end.