Let's talk town centres

The shape of the high street has drastically changed since the pandemic hit. Our Town Centres and Events Manager, Azra Mukadam, explains what the Council is doing to help local businesses.

My work is focused on our main towns, Addlestone, Chertsey and Egham. Our aim is to help local businesses thrive and to create appealing and vibrant town centres that attract visitors.

My role was created to boost the local high street economy and to support businesses, something that is more important than ever since Covid. Investing in our towns is a key part of the Council’s wider corporate plan.

Tell us about Town Teams

There are three Town Teams across the area in the three towns. The teams are a collaboration between local businesses, stakeholders and the Council, which aims to support and improve our town centres.

We meet with the groups to discuss challenges and any positives, looking at how the town community can work together to achieve smaller projects.

To join, email: towncentremanager@runnymede.gov.uk

Supporting local businesses

We know that the pandemic has created challenging conditions for many businesses and we’re here to offer support where we can. By engaging with businesses and ward councillors we’ve been able to establish what challenges each town is facing.

There is a very active chamber of commerce in Egham, which hasa been great to work with. We’re working to recreate their set-up in Addlestone and Chertsey.

In 2021, we secured money from central government through the Welcome Back Fund, enabling us to support our high streets, boosting the visitor economy.

Last year we also hosted two experiential events, including the Addlestone Festive Fayre, encouraging people to visit our town centres. The event was a huge success, and we plan to host more pop-up events in 2022.

To join our business network, visit: https://www.businessrunnymede.com/

Published: 12 January 2022