MAY I answer P Reeves, who is critical of our High Street in Christchurch, and compares it unfavourably with Southbourne and Highcliffe, saying they have small shops and a thriving community?

Christchurch also has a great number of wonderful independent shops, in both the main shopping area, and in the outer roads. We have jewellers, fashion shops and bookshops (chain and independent), two super ironmongers, a specialist gin shop – I won’t write a comprehensive list but I can’t think of anything you could not buy here.

And as well as all those shops we have the two most prestigious food retailers, Waitrose and M&S Food. We have restaurants, we have public houses and clubs, and excellent coffee shops .

On Mondays we have a big market, taking up the whole High Street, with goods varying from pet food, plants and clothes to meat and vegetables. We have a farmers’ market, and on Thursday a florist sets up under the Mayor’s Parlour.

To add to that, we are also served by travel agents, various banks and building societies and our post office. Christchurch Priory at the top of the High Street gives lunchtime concerts if you have finished your shopping and want a sit down, and of course there is our famous Regent Theatre and Cinema, also providing a good cafe and art gallery.

And we certainly have an active and happy community here; last week was half term and the High Street was even more bustling, full of folk with their children making the most of all Christchurch has to offer, and enjoying our lovely and vibrant town.


Mayor of Christchurch