Help to shape the post-pandemic Bury St Edmunds town centre...
What does Bury St Edmunds town centre need to best serve its visitors and residents in a post-pandemic world? That’s the question a new survey hopes to find answers to from people who visited the town centre before Coronavirus sent the country into lockdown last year. Everyone who takes part in the survey will have a chance to win one of five gift vouchers with a value of up to £100.
The information gathered in the online questionnaire will be used by the Business Improvement District (BID) to help improve the town centre in areas where any concerns are raised. The simple survey, which takes only minutes to complete, has been commissioned by the BID organisation Our Bury St Edmunds to find out what people really want from the town centre – and how that might differ in 2021 compared to before the pandemic.
Our Bury St Edmunds Chief Executive Mark Cordell said: “Now, more than ever before, it’s really important to find out why people come into the town centre. For example someone who, in previous years, came in five days a week for work may now be working from home for some of that time – but perhaps will want to come into town at different times for shopping or socialising.
“Shoppers may want different things too – if they have been doing more online shopping during the lockdowns they now might want options for click and collect from their favourite town centre businesses. Some may want to be able to sit outside at pavement tables when having a coffee or a meal. There’s no doubt the pandemic has changed things for everyone and we want to be able to advise our member businesses how they can respond to the changing wishes of their existing and potential customers. We can also bring the findings to the attention of partner organisations where any improvements suggested are beyond our immediate remit.”
The survey asks for suggestions that would make participants stay longer in the town centre and for their views about which are the most positive aspects about the town. It also asks for consumers’ response to new initiatives such as the LoyalFree App and the Our Bury St Edmunds Gift Card.
The research is being carried out by People and Places, an organisation which helps small towns with information and advice on best practice to face the challenges from bigger cities or out of town shopping. Participants can opt in to a prize draw at the end of the questionnaire, with a chance to win one of five Our Bury St Edmunds Gift Cards that can be redeemed in 60 different town centre businesses.
The study will remain open until the end of August. Anyone unable to take part online can contact the Our Bury St Edmunds office on 01284 766258 to receive a paper copy.