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The Mall Luton unveils plans for shoppers visiting from next week

Lee Hall

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The Mall Luton - Luton shopping mall

As shopping centres up and down the country prepare to re-open following the government’s announcement that non-essential retail can begin to trade again from next Monday, 15th June, The Mall Luton have unveiled the specific measures being put in place to ensure the safety and comfort of shoppers.

Social distancing restrictions and hygiene precautions are being introduced within the walkways and facilities at The Mall, alongside those planned by centre retailers.

Roy Greening, General Manager at The Mall, Luton commented: “The Mall has remained open to provide access to essential retailers over the past few months. From the outset, the safety and security of shoppers and staff has been our priority. Throughout this period we have been carefully managing the flow of people through our centres in line with government guidelines. As we prepare for increased numbers of visitors with the opening of all our stores, we are implementing enhanced measures to make sure the centre is a safe place to visit.”

The Mall Luton - Luton shopping mall

The Mall Luton is one of the busiest malls in Bedfordshire

The centre has considered each part of the customer’s visit, in advance of the wider opening.

A traffic light system will provide shoppers with a guide on how busy the centre is. Managers at the centre will use footfall technology to manage capacity and instigate green, amber or red alerts.

“Green means the centre is free-flowing, with no queues to enter the centre – a good time to shop,” Roy explained. “Moving to amber means the centre is approaching capacity and visitors need to prepare to queue before being able to come into the centre. Red means the centre has reached capacity and visitors will be required to queue outside until such time that we can safely allow them in.”

The traffic light status will be updated on the centre’s Facebook page facebook.com/themallluton and customers are urged to check there for the most up to date status before they visit.

Nearly all entrances to the centre will be open from 15th June, with each having a separate entrance and exit door to enable social distancing. The Bute Street entrance (by Halifax) will become exit-only, due to space constraints and the entrance to the hotel will remain closed until the venue re-opens.

A one-way system will guide shoppers to turn left when exiting shops and follow the arrow markers on the floor.

Sanitiser stations have been installed throughout the centre for customer use.

An enhanced deep cleaning regime has also been implemented throughout the centre, at key touchpoints, including toilets and baby change facilities.

Lifts in the centre will be restricted to one household group at a time.

Car park chip coins will be cleaned after every use before being placed back into the dispenser machines, and all shoppers will be asked to use contactless payment methods wherever possible for their parking and in stores.

Social distancing tips for shoppers

Roy continued, “We want everyone who chooses to visit The Mall to feel as safe as possible and ask our shoppers to please adhere to the government’s guidance on social distancing to help prevent the transmission of coronavirus,  including of course staying at home should they have symptoms of COVID-19. We would also ask visitors to be polite and respectful to centre and retail staff who have had to adapt very quickly to support and implement these systems and precautions.”

Information on accessibility and visiting the centre will be available on the centre website www.themall.co.uk/luton and via social media channels.

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Eating

The Hub Milton Keynes hosts our May #lunchNbloggers event

Lee Hall

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The Hub Milton Keynes Host #lunchNbloggers for the first time

The TrendLife Magazine team are excited to announce that #lunchNbloggers is back. We have been working hard to plan something special for our first post-lockdown event so we are happy to say we have chosen The Hub Milton Keynes.

This #lunchNbloggers will be the first event that features five dining experiences as we discover all what The Hub has to offer. Located in the heart of Milton Keynes between Midsummer Boulevard and Avebury Boulevard, The Hub is home to a wide range of popular restaurants, bars and hotels.

The Hub Milton Keynes Host #lunchNbloggers for the first time

What to expect when #lunchNbloggers arrives at The Hub Milton Keynes

As part of The Hub #lunchNbloggers experience, we will sampling and experiencing some of the most popular dining destinations in Milton Keynes

  • Bogata – We will be starting with a Meet & Great at Milton Keynes’ first speciality coffee shop
  • Las Iguanas – Join us as we sample a slice of the Latin life which is on offer at The Hub
  • Turtle Bay – A bottomless brunch of Caribbean inspired dishes at Turtle Bay is next on the menu
  • Banana Tree – At the fabulous Banana Tree, we will be experiencing Japanese style private dining
  • Blossom Room – Sticking with the Japanese theme, we will be ending the night in style at the fabulous Blossom Room. Make sure you charge your phone for those instagram stories.

As with all our #lunchNbloggers events, the masterclass is always something special and we have arranged a Yoga masterclass with a twist at Sweat Studios. Chill out, stretch out or work out – it is your choice. As with all our masterclasses, everything you need will be provided.

The #lunchNbloggers Team at Harben House

About The Hub Milton Keynes

The Hub is a vibrant restaurant, cafe, hotel and lifestyle quarter in the very heart of Milton Keynes.

Register for #lunchNbloggers

#lunchNbloggers has always been and will remain FREE to attend. We occasionally ask for a small deposit to ensure those who are selected attend notify us in advance so we can offer this exclusive opportunity to another member of the #lunchNbloggers team. To register for this event, please complete the form below and remember to follow us on instagram for updates.

Dates

Thursday 27th May 2021
From Midday until late.
1pm – Meet & greet / introductions
2pm – Private yoga session at Sweat Studios
3pm onwards – Restaurant sampling

If you wish to attend but cannot take part in the Yoga masterclass, please let us know when you register. Venues may change subject to availability.

Register


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Residents have voted on what is missing in Hitchin Town Centre

Lee Hall

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Hitchin is open for business

Just two years ago, Hitchin Town Centre had been named as a finalist in the Great British High Street Awards 2019. Despite losing out on the crown, Hitchin Town Centre has remained one of the more popular destinations in Hertfordshire. As times and demands change, town centres and high streets across Hertfordshire also need to change to meet the demands of residents and visitors coming from out of town.

As residents return to the cobbled streets around the town centre, we asked the question… ‘what is missing from Hitchin Town Centre?’ In total, we had over 200 individual responses with 40 different suggestions.

Here are the top ten things missing from Hitchin Town Centre.

From 10 to 1, below is a list of the top things voted for by Hitchin residents. Some notable responses that did not make the top ten include a Vietnamese restaurant, a gin bar, toy shop, escape room and art gallery.

10. McDonalds/KFC 2%

Would Hitchin residents welcome a busy fast food chain?

We are not sure McDonald’s in Hitchin would be a hit.

Would local residents really stomach a McDonalds in Hitchin Town Centre? Would Colonel Sanders be welcomed with open arms? These two fast food giants may bring the Big Mac, finger licking’ chicken and employment but what about the litter and UberEats riders? There are a number of issues that come hand in hand with today’s fast food giants.

9. Record store 3%

Owning music in a psychical format had been on a steady decline since 2010. However, nearly 5 million LPs were purchased in the UK last year alone. Most of these have been online but is there an opportunity for a savvy Hitchin entrepreneur to create a nostalgic record store experience?

8. Live outdoor entertainment 3%

Who doesn’t like getting out and experiencing live outdoor entertainment? Well, in most cases, councils don’t and they tend to be the decision makers on events in public spaces. Post-covid would be ideal for live outdoor entertainment to return to Hitchin Town Centre. The market place offers the space and Hitchin does have plenty of local talent.

Move over meat... Vegan burgers could be available in Hitchin soon

Move over meat… Vegan burgers could be available in Hitchin soon

7. Vegan restaurant 3%

With plant-based food businesses, festivals, and pop-ups booming, it’s clear that veganism is become a global phenomenon. Because of this changing trend, some larger towns and cities can boast of vegan only restaurants. A Hitchin vegan restaurant could become a reality soon as the demand is clearly there.

6. Independent book store 5%

Picking up 5% of votes, an independent Hitchin book store would probably struggle given that Waterstones is positioned in such a good place but Waterstones itself is currently in a battle online giant Amazon. Independent book stores tend to be more quirky and with the right ‘keeper of books’ behind the till, the experience of buying a book in person is a lot more rewarding than hear the thud of delivery hitting the passage floor.

For the remaining things missing in Hitchin, watch our video below and don’t forget to subscribe.

 

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Business

St Albans favourites deny rumours of new High Street in the sky

Lee Hall

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New St Albans High Street

Late on Tuesday night, three high profile businesses in St Albans were forced to release statements denying involvement in the launch of a Super High Street above St Albans.

Three of the so called St Albans ‘Big Six’ – Chloe James Lifestyle, Must Wine Bar and Mad Squirrel – have all put out statements denying rumours they plan to create a new St Albans High. The remaining three are expected to make statements in the next 24 hours.

The announcement of a new St Albans High Street has caused enormous uproar across Hertfordshire and beyond, with near universal disbelief from shoppers, local residents and politicians – including British Prime Minister Boris Johnson.

Unconfirmed plans suggest a monorail system will be constructed to take shoppers from the iconic clock tower to the yet-to-be confirmed new St Albans High Street somewhere above St Albans Cathedral.

New St Albans High Street

Entrance to St Albans’ proposed new Super High Street

Donna Nichol, owner of the popular independent fashion store Chloe James Lifestyle has issued a statement.

I have absolutely no idea where this has come from and ironically, I cannot see it getting off the ground. We have been welcoming back our customers and have enjoyed the buzz of a busy shop. Why would I want to move my store 30 feet above St Albans?

I have just recently updated the shop window with a new French brand called FRNCH – how will anyone see it? Ignore the rumours and find us where we have been keeping St Albans fashionable for the last ten years.

Chloe James Lifestyle prepares for lockdown reopening

Mad Squirrel St Albans have also put out a strong worded statement in response to news of the Super High Street. General Manager James has gone on record and said “Of the 25 beers we have on tap, nothing is that strong”.


We have been here in St Albans for almost two years and whilst we are accustomed to hearing the occasional bit of nonsense in the taproom, this idea is farcical. Beer and heights don’t mix so we will remain on the ground floor of St Albans in Heritage Close serving the finest beers to St Albans residents.”

Mad Squirrel has quickly established itself as one of the predominant beer destinations in St Albans. With access from the footpath towards the Abbey, it would seem a strange decision from management but when you are around beer all day, anything can happen.

Mad Squirrel St Albans

Mad Squirrel staff claimed to not have seen the plans

Local resident Isabelle Ringing who we interviewed shopping in St Albans said the idea was nonsense. “St Albans is unique and residents love it the way it is. Why? a monorail? I just can’t get my head around it – we don’t need this nonsense in St Albans.”

Have a glass or two at Must Wine Bar Harpenden

Must Wine located on George Street were also quick to release a statement in regards to the rumours. Wine Steward and c0-owner Mike Nuttall explained, “I get the idea – great minds drink alike and the concept of tasting the finest wines with breathtaking views of Hertfordshire is idyllic.

However, the individual who came up with the pour decision of running a monorail above St Albans is clearly on cloud wine.” Must Wine will continue run wine tasting classes on George Street.

As these rumours of a break-away high street continue to spread, the TrendLife team will continue to keep you updated with facts instead of fiction.

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