A £20 million- plus development in Coventry city centre has helped transform the city’s leisure economy – with new figures revealing record footfalls.
Cathedral Lanes has been transformed by Shearer Property Group, which bought the former shopping centre in 2014, and has brought eight brands to the city for the first time.
Now the latest bar-restaurant – The Botanist – has revealed it has attracted around 40,000 customers in less than three months after opening.
The Botanist was the latest occupier of the two-storey building, which has now become the leading restaurant quarter in the city.
Matt Dudgeon, general manager of The Botanist, said: “Since opening our doors we have been absolutely delighted by how well received we’ve been in Coventry.
“Even through the classic January ‘dry spell’ we remained fully booked every Saturday evening.
“We also see a lot of guests coming from outside of Coventry, wanting to come and see what all the fuss is about!”
The first phase of the development opened in 2015 and brought Cosy Club, Las Iguanas and Wagamama to Coventry
The Botanist are joined by Zizzi and Bistrot Pierre in the second phase, while MOD Pizza will open in March and Turtle Bay later this year.
Amber Wood, managing director of Cosy Club, added: “Over three years ago, Cosy Club opened in the wonderful, historic City of Coventry in the Cathedral Lanes shopping centre, which has made a name for itself as a top dining destination.
“The site has always performed above our expectations since its opening and we’re very happy with its performance. Coventry’s food scene continues to thrive and we are thrilled to be a part of it!”
Shearer Property Group is the City Council’s partner in the City Centre South and Precinct developments, and will be showcasing its work in the city at MIPIM – the world’s largest property development and investment show.
The company is a member of the Coventry & Warwickshire MIPIM Partnership which is made up of around 20 private sector companies and organisations who promote the area’s presence at the four-day event as part of the UK Midlands.
Guy Shearer said: “We always saw the potential of Cathedral Lanes but it’s success has even exceeded our expectations.
“We knew it lacked a restaurant quarter which would attract local people as well as the very vibrant student population, but the response from the operators and the customer numbers being recorded proves the extraordinary pent up demand in the City.
“Cathedral Lanes is playing a pivotal role in helping the development of the city centre, as is the transformation of The Precinct area, which is now on site for delivery before 2021 City of Culture and that is certainly a message which we and Coventry will be taking to investors at MIPIM.”
Councillor Jim O’Boyle, Coventry City Council’s Cabinet Member for Jobs and Regeneration and a Coventry and Warwickshire LEP board director, believes the success of Cathedral Lanes is part of a growing confidence in Coventry as a place to invest.
He said: “The city centre has improved so much in recent years, with new buildings, new restaurants and work to make it a greener, more pleasant place for everyone – and there is more on the way.
“Cathedral Lanes is a real success story for the city and part of our overall aim at bringing in more shoppers and visitors into the city and helping businesses flourish.”