Latest News | 26 June 2024

Raising Becketwell’s game ahead of performance venue opening

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In the latest edition of Marketing Derby’s Innovate Magazine we look at how a key leisure scheme could be about to kick-start an exciting new chapter for a city neighbourhood.

Next year, the new £45.8 million, 3,500-capacity performance venue at Becketwell is due to open its doors.

It will be a major game-changer in terms of attracting extra footfall. Once open it will host over 200 cultural and commercial events each year and is expected to attract an additional 250,000 visitors to Derby.

But is the surrounding neighbourhood ready for such an influx? Innovate finds out how local businesses and landlords are working with Marketing Derby to help create a vibrant, interesting and welcoming feel to Becketwell.

One business owner who fully realises the potential is Jai Sandhu, owner of Nixon Coffee, in Abbey Street.

“I see it as an opportunity to create a sort of Ancoats of Derby,” Jai tells Innovate, referring to the former industrial  area of Manchester, which has been transformed into a bustling, hip neighbourhood of apartments, bars, restaurants and independent businesses.

“Food and beverage, retail, barbers, beauticians, artisan cakes and doughnuts and, you know, quirky spins on businesses. That’s what I see in this area and, having  with spoken with some of the older local residents, that’s what this community had many years ago.”

Jai says there has already been a huge benefit from being part of the landlord group that Marketing Derby has assembled, gaining a better understanding of what other businesses are planning in the area and being able to work in a unified way to achieve progress.

And while he was already confident enough to invest in the area, Jai believes others cannot now fail to see the opportunity that the new performance venue will bring.

He tells Innovate: “When you build a structure like that, holding 3,500 people at capacity, it’s impossible not to have some sort of windfall of business from people entering or leaving those premises. I know when I go out somewhere, I don’t just go and come back. You go and explore, or you spend a bit of time in a restaurant, you spend a bit of time in a bar. Naturally people will be spreading out into the local area.”

Innovate also finds out about some of the work Marketing Derby is doing to link those interested in investing in the area with empty properties.

Amy Burton, inward investment executive at Marketing Derby, who has been working closely with the local landlords, said: “We are actively trying to engage with the owners of the buildings and understand why they’re still empty? What can we do to help? Can we make introductions? Can we perhaps try to leverage some funding to help them maintain or improve the frontages, at least, so it’s ready for when people are coming to the performance venue.”

The read the feature in full visit .

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