Dolphin Square bringing ‘exciting times’ to Weston-super-Mare

Dolphin Square site in Oxford Street, Weston.

Dolphin Square site in Oxford Street, Weston. - Credit: Archant

Weston-super-Mare town centre manager Steve Townsend hopes a revamped Dolphin Square will help the town cope with a potential expansion of the Cribbs Causeway shopping centre in Bristol.

Planning permission has been granted for Cribbs to expand, but the Government is reviewing the plans over fears it could hinder other economies in the South West.

Mr Townsend believes Weston is no longer a ‘one-trick pony reliant on a summer coach trade’ and is confident ‘exciting times’ are ahead.

He told the Mercury: “An expansion of Cribbs Causeway is not going to help businesses in Weston at all, but we have a unique proposition which is our seafront and beach.

“We have to be competitive too, though, and we’re going to have a new cinema and a Nando’s on our doorstep at Dolphin Square – people won’t need to go to Cribbs Causeway.”

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Mr Townsend hopes other key pieces to the town centre puzzle will be located soon.

He said: “TJ Hughes is a development that needs to happen. I am led to believe there has been interest in the building, but we’ll see what happens.

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“It’s exciting times for Weston – we just need the big ones in TJ Hughes and BHS to be filled.”

TJ Hughes, in St James Street closed its doors in 2011, while BHS in High Street ceased trading last summer – and both remain vacant.

The town centre manager floated the idea of dividing the BHS building into multiple units as a ‘fashion centre’.

Mr Townsend added: “One of the things we’re desperate for in Weston town centre is clothing, particularly men’s clothing.

“We have some great independent retailers like Walker and Ling and Cecil Walker, but we definitely need more.”

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