Harpenden retailers to meet on Monday

Street theatre and other events to be discussed to help promote Harpenden

THE REVIVAL of Harpenden’s commercial heart is gathering pace with a meeting of local business representatives planned for tonight, Monday July 11.

A range of ideas to boost business will be discussed, including promotional activities such as street theatre, a week of events and Harpenden’s own food and drink festival.

Keith Lunn, chairman of the Harpenden Retail Partnership (HRP), has urged fellow businesspeople to attend the meeting at 6pm, at the Harpenden town council chamber, Leyton Road.

Shoppers and retailers alike have been shocked at the number of vacant stores in Harpenden, with 16 businesses now closed. The aim is to stop further closures and encourage visitors into the town.

An agenda for the meeting suggests various promotional activities including ‘Keep it Local’ window displays and offers, links with other local events such as Classics on the Common and ‘Harpenden’s Own Beer Festival’.

Keith said: “We are trying to encourage retailers to come and join us and discuss the issues that are affecting us in town, whether it be parking, rent, rates, networking, sharing ideas on how people have grown their business and what other things we can do to make Harpenden more appealing and a vibrant place to do business.

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Tony McFarland, a member of the partnership, said: “It’s paramount that retailers get together and share their concerns because there are so many out there who are doing exceptionally well, and some who are ailing and need advice.

“We want as many people coming along as possible, because there are probably people out there who have got some great ideas that would be of use.”

Those interested in attending the meeting should register online: http://harpendenretailpartnership.co.uk/latest-news/agenda-meeting-11th-july-2011/