Chichester city centre received a big boost this week, with an announcement that the giant Next fashion retailing chain is to move into the former 19th-century Corn Exchange building, in East Street.
The imposing property, with its massive Doric columns, was previously occupied and owned by McDonalds, the fast-food restaurant business, which sold it to the current owner, a private investment company.
The closures of McDonalds, Tesco and Dixons in the central shopping area had led to concerns about its future.
But the vote of confidence by a company widely regarded as the UK's leading fashion retailer will give a major lift to the local retailing scene.
HMV are also poised to open a new store in the same street – in premises previously occupied by a Tesco supermarket.
Full report in the June 23 issue of the Chichester Observer