Get involved: send your pictures, video, news and views by texting ECHONEWS to 80360, or email us Click here for details »
Celebrating 25 years of shopping at the Royals
4:00pm Wednesday 27th February 2013 in News
THE ROYALS shopping centre is celebrating 25 years of trading.
There will be a fashion extravaganza next month (mar) to mark Southend’s first covered shopping centre.
The opening of The Royals in 1988 proved to be a major event.
That part of the High Street had a mixed history – after the visit of Princess Caroline to The Royal Hotel in 1803 the area became prosperous with restaurants, cafes and leisure venues, such as the Ritz cinema.
But by the 1980’s the area needed investment and the site at the top of Pier Hill was earmarked for a brand new shopping centre.
Not long after it first opened,the Royals starred in the video for Morrissey’s Top 10 single ‘Every Day is Like Sunday’ and used to have a bandstand right in the middle of it.
Now it boasts more than 25 shops – including major retailers such as Boots, Debenhams, H&M, TK Maxx and Primark.
To celebrate it will host a Spring Fashion Event with six fashion shows including Fashion and Marketing students from South Essex College on Saturday March 2 from 12 to 4pm.
The Mayor Sally Carr will cut a birthday cake at 12.30. There will be a VIP lounge with light refreshments from BB’s and a chance to check out the latest beauty products from the likes of Boots and Debenhams top brands. The VIP lounge is free to those who register via The Royals Facebook page – but just 50 pairs of tickets are available.
Centre Manager Dawn Jeakings said: “The Royals is a fantastic success story and the key to its popularity and prosperity is that we have continually responded to what local people want from their shopping centre.
“The Royals has become somewhere they love, trust and want to keep coming back to time and time again. I like to think we are part of the heart of Southend and something of a hub for what’s happening in the community – whether that’s hosting exhibitions and local theatre groups, taking part in an Italian Festival or celebrating Chinese New Year.”