More than 30 local people have submitted their proposals to run a shop in the £25,000 Win a Shop competition being organised by the Crown Glass Shopping Centre in Nailsea.
The closing date for entries has now been reached and judges will shortlist and interview six of the entrants later this month to decide upon the best proposal for a new shop in the centre.
The winner of the innovative competition will be given a retail unit in the shopping centre, free of rent and rates, for a year. In addition, they will receive free mentoring help and support from local financial, banking, retail and marketing experts.
Mark Robinson, founding partner of Crown Glass Shopping Centre landlord Ellandi said: “There has been a fantastic response to the competition, with a much greater number of applicants than we had envisaged and some super ideas for the new shop. The level of interest shows how many people in North Somerset want to run their own retail business.
“Now we have to whittle down the entrants to a manageable number for our interview session.”
The competition to win 15 Colliers Walk for a year is open to residents of North Somerset and Bristol aged 18 and over. Shortlisted entries will present their idea for a shop to a panel of local business people, including representatives from landlord Ellandi, Nailsea Town Council and Nailsea Chamber of Commerce.
At the end of the one-year period of occupancy the winner will have the opportunity to sign a commercial lease to continue occupancy if they wish.
A number of local business specialists have volunteered their time and expertise to support the new retailer. Local mentors include Wards Solicitors, Neil Houghton Accounting, Waitrose, HSBC Bank, Ontrac advertising agency and HPR public relations.
Specialist shopping centre investment and asset manager Ellandi, which acquired the Crown Glass Shopping Centre in 2009 in partnership with Development Securities plc, has implemented a series of improvements at the centre in recent months. These include the introduction of free WiFi, and the launch of a Nailsea-focused loyalty card, as well as investing £250,000 in refurbishing the office block in Crown Glass Place, which is now almost completely occupied by local businesses
Crown Glass has also staged a series of special events for shoppers, ranging from bellydancing displays to free pet health advice. It is also supporting local and national charities. It also plays host to a Tuesday Market each week and to the monthly Nailsea Farmers’ Market and Craft Market.
Keep up to date with all Crown Glass events on Facebook.com/crownglassshopping’