Clarks Village

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Traditional paved walkways and village setting with shops down either side.

Established in 1993, Clarks Village was the first outlet village to open in the UK. Situated in the heart of Somerset, Clarks Village has continually grown and developed over the years and brings an unrivalled and unique shopping experience. Over 90 high street and designer brands are brought together in a wonderfully diverse blend of buildings, including some of C&J Clarks original factory buildings with their decades of history and heritage. Clarks Village is a designer outlet shopping centre in Street in the English county of Somerset. There are also numerous coffee shops and a restaurant terrace including a number of well-known restaurants and fast food chains, such as Pret a Manger, Prezzo, Frankie & Benny's and Pizza Express [1]

Outlet shopping delivers prices that are up to 60% lower than normal high street prices, and these prices are available every day. With additional promotions, special offers and seasonal sales, prices can be up to 80% off normal retail prices. There is some misconception that outlet shopping means limited sizes, end-of-line, seconds or clearance, this may have been part of the experience in the early years of outlets but it’s certainly not the case today at Clarks Village. The high street and designer brands will have a wide range of stock including the latest fashions and trends. Clarks Village is sited in some of the old factory buildings of C&J Clark which was established in Street during the 19th century when Cyrus Clark started a business in sheepskin rugs, later joined by his brother James, who introduced the production of woollen slippers and, later, boots and shoes.[2] but shoes are no longer manufactured there.

The site is owned by the Hermes Real Estate group and managed by REALM Ltd,[1] who also manage a number of other outlet centres in the United Kingdom.

In 2014 a record-breaking 9 new high-end stores opened (more than any other year in Clarks Village's trading history), including Musto, Seasalt, Lindt, The Cosmetics Company, Pizza Express, Jane Clayton & Co., Raging Bull, Ernest Jones and a Ben Sherman pop-up store.[3]

In December 2014, The Coca Cola truck attracted a record-breaking 60,000 visitors to the centre.[4] Expansion is planned in 2015 with a new Superdry store arriving in the shopping outlet in the summer.[5]

Clarks Village selects a charity of the year to support and Somerset Rural Youth Project is it's chosen charity for 2016.

The Shoe Museum, which is a short distance from Clarks Village,[6] provides a wealth of information about the history of Clarks and footwear manufacture in general,[6] and a selection of shop display showcards from the 1930s, 1950s and 1960s,[7] and television advertisements.[8] The frontage of the shoe museum includes the clock tower and water tower.[9]

Attracting nearly 4m visitors a year, Clarks Village has become not only the leading shopping centre of choice for many in the South West but a destination for many visitors to Somerset from across the UK and further afield.[10] Many family events take place during the year with activities and school holiday activities; look out for details on the Clarks Village website and social media platforms. A weekly fruit & veg market stall on Wednesdays and Saturdays, Somerset Curry Club on Saturdays and other entertainment, household, garden, food and drink concessions are regular visitors to Clarks Village which makes a visit a truly enjoyable experience.

2016 has seen new store openings from Molton Brown, Hobbs London, Havaianas, Racing Green, Suit Direct, Red5, IT Luggage and Skechers footwear.

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b "REALM corporate brochure" (PDF). REALM. p. 11. 
  2. ^ Scott, Shane (1995). The hidden places of Somerset. Aldermaston: Travel Publishing Ltd. p. 82. ISBN 1-902007-01-8. 
  3. ^ http://www.centralsomersetgazette.co.uk/Shopping-outlet-opens-doors-major-high-street/story-23192682-detail/story.html
  4. ^ http://www.centralsomersetgazette.co.uk/Record-breaking-60-000-visitors-head-Clarks-Coca/story-25727794-detail/story.html
  5. ^ http://www.westerngazette.co.uk/Superdry-open-new-store-Somerset/story-25889527-detail/story.html
  6. ^ a b "Shoe Museum". Information Britain. Retrieved 12 July 2009. 
  7. ^ "The Shoe Museum, Street". Nothing to see here. Retrieved 12 July 2009. 
  8. ^ "The Shoe Museum". Somerset Tourist Guide. Retrieved 12 July 2009. 
  9. ^ "Main roadside frontage to Clarks Factory, Clock Tower, 5 bay right return and Water Tower". Images of England. Retrieved 23 March 2008. 
  10. ^ Clarks Village postcode survey research - March 2016

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 51°07′42″N 2°44′24″W / 51.128361°N 2.739866°W / 51.128361; -2.739866