It’s evident that the £1bn investment programme is attracting new life in to the town a touch of Soho to Stockport.
The challenges facing Stockport are little different from those facing many other UK wide towns and cities as lifestyles and habits change to suit today’s way of working and living.
For example, empty shops are perhaps the most visible results of advances in digital technology. But they also present a new and unique type of retail and community offering.
In the last few months Stockport has welcomed two fantastic new and unique dining experiences into the Old Town around the Market Place.
Where The Light Gets In – @WTLGI – has broken all the rules and brought an offer as exclusive as it gets! Sam Buckley’s adventurous WTLGI would stand head and shoulders above the crowd in Chelsea or Soho which is why it is attracting the London ‘lovies’ in their droves, a consequence of which is pleasing for Carl and the team over at the Holiday Inn Express who have a full house most weekends.
No more than a couple of hundred yards from WTLGI, The Allotment opened fractionally earlier and has already generated incredibly positive reactions from a disproportionately wide area. The Allotment’s initial attraction was that it served exclusively vegan food or to be more precise, exclusively vegan and gluten free food. This is a long way from the business plan that most restaurateurs would take to the high street but while the niche appeal immediately attracted vegan clientele, chef patron Matthew Nutter’s revelatory skill and imagination in the kitchen quickly drew a much wider slice of the dining community to his small Stockport restaurant.
Another fantastic addition to Stockport is Tramp – a hair boutique on Little Underbank, bringing another touch of Soho to Stockport. Ready to ruffle a few feathers and make waves in the styling world are catwalk stylists Kristin Evans and Naomi Graham. Partners Kristian and Naomi describe Tramp as ‘bursting with colour and vibrancy – an Instagrammer’s dream’ and have nicknamed the area around Little Underbank #stockportsoho.
The pair spent years sharpening their scissors on the famous and fabulous of London and New York, including Amy Winehouse, Noel Fielding and Agyness Deyn – as well as working on London Fashion Week, the Brit Awards and the Baftas. Having returned to Naomi’s home town to open their own salon, they chose Little Underbanks for its quirky, creative and slightly edgy feel.
Adding another totally new dimension to the town centre is Hatters Coffee Co, where having a coffee feels more continental than convenient adding a touch of sophistication and a fantastic selection of beautifully crafted cakes and pastries.
If you haven’t visited Stockport for a while, do so now! It’s exciting! It’s changing for the better, catering for a more sophisticated visitor in a typically off-centre, Stockport whacky way!
Written by Helen White – co-founder of Marketing Stockport