BEFORE the recent restoration of the city Butter Market in North Street, people of Chichester enjoyed the happy hotchpotch character of small businesses, greengrocers, bakers, sandwich bars, crafts, antiques, haberdashery, WI market, local sausage purveyors, etc. A daily delight to enjoy. Ideal for a small market city.
Then the city council admirably decided to restore this beautiful building from its sad state, inviting the public to participate in a competition for its improvement. For myself, I took a long time studying the various options.
True to form, the local council plumped for the design least likely to perpetuate the small-scale venues, where small businesses could establish and ply their wares.
While it is wonderful that this fine old building has been saved and cared for, we are presented with a cold, aloof, London-style mall, far removed from its previous intimacy.
Admittedly, only one or two premises to date are let; an
up-market brasserie and two posh jewellers fronting the street. How exciting!
Is this a taste of the rest of the development to come?
The hoardings, for many months, have heralded an ‘exclusive development’, and by golly that is what we have. I, and many others, now feel truly excluded. What a sad disappointment and a lost opportunity.