GALLERY: Queensgate, Peterborough, celebrates 30th birthday with photo exhibition and family fun
THE Queensgate shopping centre in Peterborough is celebrating its thirtieth birthday this week, with a stunning photographic exhibition charting both its history and its vibrant operations today.
And to add to the party atmosphere, throughout this weekend some special family fun activities will be held, and on Saturday there will be stilt walking balloon modellers out and about throughout the centre.
The photography exhibition in Central Square is run in conjunction with esteemed local photographer and paramedic, Chris Porsz and the Peterborough Museum. It will showcase the evolution of the centre, combining the museum’s nostalgic images of the city prior to Queensgate, along with Chris’ more recent archive of shots taking viewers way back to the 1970’s up to the present day.
As many shoppers may remember, the Queensgate story began on 9 March 1982 when the centre was opened by Queen Beatrice of the Netherlands, marking the start of a new retail beginning for Peterborough and the wider catchment area.
Thirty years on, and the centre continues to flourish, boasting over 90 national high street and unique independent retailers, enticing hundreds of thousands of shoppers every week. This November will see the anticipated arrival of retail giant Primark, as part a �20 million investment, further strengthening the centre’s eclectic retail mix.
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Not a centre to rest on its laurels, Queensgate is also currently in the midst of a �10 million pound car park refurbishment project which and will see all four centre car parks completely transformed in a bid to improve facilities for visitors. Already the newly renovated Green (Clare) car park has opened to rave reviews from the public.
Aside from developments in Queensgate, Peterborough city centre has also changed dramatically over the past three decades. The regeneration of Cathedral Square and growing catering offering with the introduction of Nandos and Patisserie Valerie has created a vibrant, caf� culture. Plus, Queensgate will be bringing popular Italian restaurant chain Carluccio’s to the square this summer, occupying the former Harriet’s tearoom unit, further enhancing the area’s burgeoning dining offer.
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Sam Eastwood, Queensgate centre director said: “Thirty years on and we are still trading successfully. In fact, despite the tough retail landscape, last year we saw footfall increase two and half per cent against the year before.
“While our much-cherished flagship stores remain firm favourites, we have continued to diversify our retail offer year on year, with a continued influx of major new stores. This, in addition to the imminent arrival of our Primark anchor store and everyone’s favourite Italian Carluccio’s, clearly shows the confidence major national brands have in the centre.
He added: “As a centre deeply rooted in the community, our continued success is testament to all of our loyal shoppers who come to the centre again and again and we would like them to welcome them to share in our celebrations. With so much good news and new projects in the pipeline, we look forward to another fantastic thirty years ahead.”
For further information visit: www.queensgate-shopping.co.uk