Spring 2015 update

Upton Business Association 

Spring 2015 Update

Dear Traders

It is hard to believe that it is four months since our evening meeting in The Boathouse. You will recall that, with your active participation, we then developed a series of actions and projects, all designed to stimulate the local business environment and enhance the town’s attraction to visitors and residents alike.

This is a brief update on what has happened since –

The 2015 Town Guide was produced on schedule early May. We have printed 40,000 copies, of which 32,000 will be widely distributed to visitor and tourist outlets across the West Midlands. Copies are also available for the Festivals, the TIC and local shops. If you want additional copies, please call into Value for Money. The new presentation of the Guide is thought to be more in line with tourist and visitor needs, and is designed for volume distribution.

At the end of April we put up our new design “Spring into Upton” banners at the three town approaches. Please note the one on the A38 was damaged by gale force winds, and will be reinstated shortly.

The flags, a mixture of patriotic and town logo versions, are gradually being put up. We think it is important to support our vital local charity MISAR, so we have commissioned them to put up the flags, and they are progressively doing this in tandem with their important training program. We also arranged for the UTC promotional banners to be restored to a good condition, and these went up at the end of April.

We have again obtained funding to install a brilliant display of hanging baskets, in cooperation with Upton in Bloom. These are expected to be ready end of May, or early June.

As discussed at our January meeting, together with MHDC, we have commissioned People & Places to conduct a signage survey, covering both heritage, recreational and retail signage. We asked for special attention to be paid to directing visitors to the Old Street shopping area. The survey has been completed, and we await a draft of the report. We will share the findings and proposals widely.

You pointed out the importance of the New Street play and picnic area as an amenity to both visitors and residents, so we have entered into a joint agreement with the Town Council. They will clean the area and re-paint the equipment, and the UBA is funding the installation of new swing seats and chains. This make-over will sustain the area until more ambitious plans, funded by local housing developments, can be realised.

Our January meeting also highlighted the need for a more convenient and accessible town event Calendar. This project has been taken up by the Upton Town Partnership, with joint funding from both groups. We are excited about this development, and the first edition is planned for late May.

We have also been in discussion with WCC highways, requesting the provision of additional “Upton upon Severn” Brown Tourist signs at the A38 / M50 junction. We are confident that this will go ahead, and further discussions are scheduled for the end of May.

We are still working on the promotion of Upton as a destination for walkers and ramblers. Simon Wilkinson, our local WCC Footpath Officer, has already published details of local walking routes, and these are now available through the MHDC “Visit the Malverns” website.

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We also discussed developing a plan to encourage more coach companies to include Upton as a destination on their tours. Don Bridges kindly stepped forward to initiate this project. If you have any suggestions, or would like to help Don in any way, please contact him at The Pudding Shop.

And finally, we presented an annual report on UBA activities to the UTC Annual Town Meeting at the end of April. I hope you have found this update useful and reassuring that the Business Association continues in working hard to promote Upton and Upton’s businesses. All of the above has been accomplished by a very small group of motivated volunteers. We welcome any additional volunteers to work for the benefit of our Traders and the Town. If you have any questions, comments or suggestions, or especially of you want to help in our work, please contact me at chair@uptonbusiness.co.uk or call me on 01684 591355.

Best regards
Annette Keyworth
Chairman, Upton Business Association.