Alcester to become smallest town in Warwickshire to have Free Town Centre Wifi!


It has been 18 months in the planning, but the Retail, Hospitality and Tourism Partnership are very excited to announce that Alcester is about to become the smallest Town in Warwickshire to have Free Town centre Wifi. With the capital funding coming from the Warwickshire Towns Network and the phone lines being supported with monies remaining from the Mary Portas Fund, installation is nearly complete. The system by Elephant Wifi is already proving extremely successful in Stratford upon Avon, Rugby and Leamington and WTN plan to roll the wifi out countywide in their bid to future proof the regions High Sts. 

by 10 May, 2017 No Comments

“Visit Alcester” joins Shakespeare’s England


A part of our Retail, Hospitality and Tourism strategy our focus this spring is to drive footfall into Alcester Town Centre. Shakespeare’s England is formally recognised by Visit Britain and Visit England as the official Tourist board for the South Warwickshire region. With Alcester placed little more than 5 minutes from the home of Shakespeare, Stratford Upon Avon, membership should assist us in driving some of their tourists in the direction of our wonderful little market town.

As you can see from the logos – there was method in the madness of our new branding – fits in rather well!


by 10 May, 2017 No Comments

Coventry & Warwickshire Chamber host first affiliated event with Alcester Chamber and its a full house!


The panel event, hosted by C&W Chamber and our B2B Chair Amanda Pillinger was huge success. Over 40 businesses attended a panel event at King Court Hotel, with Alcester Chamber members, Rob Harrison from Glued, Jason Bassett Health & Safety, Sarah Wright HR and Karl from KTAS taking the floor. Each gave a 10 minute presentation followed by a team question and answer session which turned out to be pretty lively. The feedback was overwhelmingly good – Twitter was (almost) trending!  The next affiliated event is set for Monday 3rd July at Minerva Mill.



by 8 May, 2017 No Comments

Retail,Hospitality and Tourism Partnership launches a fresh “brand” for Visit Alcester – EAT SHOP DISCOVER


We are delighted with our new branding and our call to actions which encompass our Retail; Hospitality and Tourism sector. All Partnership members are encouraged like and share our pages and to tag @visitalcester in all their social media activity and in turn we then share their posts with our followers. We have a high engagement rate on all three platforms.

All we want now is a website! We have the domain, we just need the funds to build it! If you would like to sponsor all or part of the build please contact

Follow us on Facebook Follow us on Twitter Follow us on Instagram


by 10 Apr, 2017 No Comments

Alcester Retail, Hospitality and Tourism Partnership and Alcester Community Trust attend Warwickshire Towns Conference


Warwickshire County Council was joined this week by the county’s retailers, Town Centre managers, Bid managers, and a selection of the country’s top town centre experts at a conference designed to help boost Warwickshire’s towns.The ‘Warwickshire Together’ conference took place at the Holiday Inn, Kenilworth and focused on a range of initiatives to help invigorate the region’s town centres in the face of increasing competition from the internet and out of town shopping.

A key project launched at the conference was a new collaboration between Warwickshire County Council and a crowdfunding platform – Spacehive. Through the platform, the County Council is providing a new £134,000 capital fund to support civic projects in Warwickshire’s Towns.

Niraj Dattani, Spacehive

We heard about how the crowdfunding platform could be used to encourage town centre communities to generate and fund civic initiatives that they would like to see in their town centres.

Niraj Dattani of Spacehive spoke about how the platform has helped to transform other town centres in the country with projects that have generated footfall in the towns. Initiatives are paid for by contributions from the public, businesses and agencies including local authorities where pledges are made via Spacehive.

He said: “A crowdfunding idea has to have local appeal and be accessible if it is to succeed. It empowers people to make change in their area. It creates the kind of atmosphere that will make a town centre sustainable.”


We also heard from a number of experts including Ojay McDonald, Head of Public Policy for the Association of Town and City Management (ATCM); Xav Anderson of Clockwork City, specialists in helping retailers increase their profits through better online promotion and effective use of social media; Alison Read of Decisions by Design, whose expertise has been used by large multinational firms and small independent retailers to become more successful; and Dr Fiona Ellis-Chadwick, Senior Lecturer in Retail at Loughborough University.

One of the most engaging Guest Speakers was Councillor Johnny Hayes MBE, from York City Council, he inspired us all with the story of Bishopthorpe Road, known as ‘Bishy Road’ with his story behind the transformation of an otherwise unassuming, run down high street. Winner of ‘The Great British High Street 2015’( the same year the Alcester won its #GBHighst RISING STAR) Bishopthorpe Road has now become a hive of popular independent businesses that brings personality and local charm to what is now a destination in its own right.Cllr Hayes said: “What we did with Bishopthorpe Road was market the street as a whole rather than individual businesses. It showed the power of people working together.”

Definitely inspiring!!!! Watch out Alcester we have ideas in the pipeline!

by 21 Mar, 2017 No Comments

Alcester Chamber and Alcester Academy look to team up with Coventry & Warwickshire Skills for Growth programme


Alcester Chamber, Alcester Academy and Warwickshire County Council are looking to team up with Alcester based businesses in a wide range of industries to include Hospitality, Tourism, Manufacturing, Engineering, Digital and the Creative sectors to apply for funding and provide for skills growth training. If you would like to know more about this project please contact 

by 19 Mar, 2017 No Comments

Warwickshire’s economy announced as one of the fastest growing in the UK


Warwickshire has one of the fastest growing economies in the country – and the fastest-growing of all local authorities of comparable size, new figures have revealed.

The county’s productivity in terms of output per worker has risen by 19.6% since 2009, outperforming national and regional averages.

Furthermore, over the past four years, Warwickshire’s growth in productivity capacity is exceeded by only three other local authorities in the UK, all much smaller economic areas.

The figures, released by the Office of National Statistics, show that Warwickshire is firmly establishing itself as a principal driver of labour productivity growth and leading the way in reducing the productivity gap in the region.

The sustained growth further strengthens Warwickshire’s reputation as a great place to base a business. That reputation is attracting companies from around the UK and beyond with BARO Vehicles (Argentina), Ubisoft games studio (France) and EDAG Engineering (Germany) among those to have recently arrived in the county.

The strong productivity performance in Warwickshire has also helped drive growth for the wider Coventry & Warwickshire Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP) area. Since 2009, only two other LEP areas in the country have outperformed the Coventry & Warwickshire LEP in terms of levels of productivity and rate of growth.

The growth in productivity is linked to a number of factors including an increase in new businesses and a reduction in business failures, both areas targeted by Warwickshire County Council’s business support programmes.

Another factor is the improved skills of young people in the county, with a significant reduction in the number of 16-24-year-olds who have no qualifications.

Again, this area is a high priority for the council which focuses on skills and apprenticeships, building links between business and schools and reducing the number of young people not in education, employment or training (NEET).

These are key priority areas proactively targeted by Warwickshire County Council through inward investment, business support and access to finance initiatives.

The productivity growth is also driven by other factors including transport links, apprenticeship schemes and business innovation. Warwickshire is at the forefront of innovation in the IT and computing sectors as well as the automotive industry, but the growth is general. Since 2012, all industries in the county have grown on average by 13.8%, higher than the West Midlands (10.9%) and the UK (11.4%).

The manufacturing sector, for which the county is renowned, has seen a 37.5% increase in output, more than three times the growth-rate across the UK.


Great News!!

by 19 Mar, 2017 No Comments

Warwickshire Towns Network pledge £134,000 to Town Centre capital investment via civic crowd funding platform Spacehive



In a bid to make ever reducing WCC Town Centre Capital improvement funds go further the Warwickshire Towns Network have teamed up with civic crowdfunding platform Spacehive. The exciting new initiative offers individual Warwickshire Towns the opportunity to bid for County Council funding to support capital projects that they feel would benefit them specifically. In order to secure funding however, community and private sector investment and engagement is imperative. This change in the economic landscape is becoming commonplace in nearly all European, Central and local government funding opportunities. Alcester Retail, Hospitality and Tourism Partnership are working on potential projects that we can put forward to improve Alcester town centre infrastructure with particular focus on expenditure that will assist us to increase footfall in the area. Any ideas for projects or pledges of support would be gratefully received. e:

For more information please visit their page on Spacehive

by 18 Mar, 2017 No Comments

Alcester’s retailers engage in £1000 worth of digital and marketing training courtesy of Warwickshire Towns Network and Rural Growth Fund


WTN launched a programme offering Retail, Digital and Marketing Training to independent Retail, Hospitality and Tourism sector businesses based in Warwickshire’s market Towns. OrangeMabel, Linda Rose, Camilla Jones, Robinson Tailors, Escape Lifestyle Boutique, 5 a Day and Alcester Country Market all engaged and benefited from £1000 worth of training courtesy of the Rural Development Fund.  WTN are now looking to secure funding for a second round of training – priority for places goes to members of Alcester Retail, Hospitality and Tourism Partnership. Join now! 

by 1 Mar, 2017 No Comments

Connection Magazine come on board as Patron Members of Alcester Chamber


We are delighted to announce that Connection magazine have joined Alcester Chamber at Patron Level. Amy is now a member of the Chamber Committee. Their readership represents a high value target demographic for many of our members businesses so please contact them to find out about current chamber member offers.

T: 01789 491005 E:





by 10 Feb, 2017 No Comments

Alcester Retail, Hospitality and Tourism Partnership invited to Join Warwickshire Towns Network


From 1st January 2017, Alcester Retail, Hospitality and Tourism Partnership were invited to join the Warwickshire Towns Network. The network is chaired by Warwickshire County Council Team for Towns centres and Tourism. Town Centre Leaders and BID Managers from across the whole of Warwickshire meet quarterly to share news, ideas, strategy, funding opportunities and more. Guest speakers and presentations feature insightful information on a range of subjects including Digital Strategy and infrastructure , Data collection and interpretation, Town centre marketing, Retail training, Regional networking and Collaborative partnerships. Alcester’s membership marks us as the first Market Town in Warwickshire to be invited and allows us to be at the forefront of a new pioneering project by Warwickshire County Council to support the smaller towns in the region.

by 30 Jan, 2017 No Comments

Alcester Chamber of Trade and Commerce become affiliated with Coventry and Warwickshire Chamber


From 1st January2017, Alcester Chamber of Trade and Commerce joined Coventry and Warwickshire Chamber as Affiliate members bringing wider benefits to our members and a quarterly joint networking events to Alcester. In addition Alcester Chamber members are entitled to a 15% discount on Coventry and Warwickshire memberships.

by 18 Jan, 2017 No Comments