Investments are a vote of confidence in town

Mayor of ABC Council, Alderman Gareth Wilson cuts the ribbon to officially open the new Range store at the Meadows Shopping Centre. Also included are from left, Leah Johnston, James Rider, general manager, Nigel Oddy, Range CEO, Ken Fox, regional manager, and Samantha Millar. INPT20-200.
Mayor of ABC Council, Alderman Gareth Wilson cuts the ribbon to officially open the new Range store at the Meadows Shopping Centre. Also included are from left, Leah Johnston, James Rider, general manager, Nigel Oddy, Range CEO, Ken Fox, regional manager, and Samantha Millar. INPT20-200.

The opening of two major retailers is a major statement of confidence for Portadown, a local trader has said.

The town was booming at the weekend for the opening of huge retailer, The Range.

There was heavy traffic for the new outlet, with the opening coinciding with the Portadown Boat Club regatta which also attracted crowds.

There’s further good news on the economic front as the new Greggs bakery opens today (Thursday), creating 17 new jobs for the town.

The popular pastry experts new store in High Street Mall is one of their biggest in Northern Ireland.

President of Portadown Chamber of Commerce, Adrian Farrell said he believed these stores opening are a major statement of confidence for the town.

He said: “It is significant that you have two major UK retailers investing heavily in the town centre. The Range has spent millions at their site and Greggs are making a significant investment.

“It is a statement of confidence for Portadown. I would hope that other retailers, both locally and nationally will be looking at Portadown and following the track that the Range and Greggs have trod to get here.

“Greggs are opening on Thursday, but The Range has been trading extremely well, they are very happy with how that unit is going, which is another vote of confidence for the town centre.”

With work underway for a new park and ride in Portadown, Adrian thinks this is a really positive time for the town, he said: “Over 300 spaces are being created, that’s a big investment as well. There’s a lot of things happening in Portadown.

“You’ve got the major retailers blazing a trail into Portadown and this is followed by local retailers also investing, I think Portadown is a really good story at the minute.

“It has been a long time since I saw so much positive stuff happening in the town centre.

“It is all taking place within the primary retail core, which is to be welcomed.

“This is on the back of Bob and Berts and Ground coming to the town. Ground is extending their opening hours for the summer, which is brilliant as that shows it is working for them.

“Obviously a demand there because they are opening late Thursday and Friday nights.”