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High street shopping in Northwich

PUBLISHED: 00:00 18 September 2015

Northwich Library in Witton Street

Northwich Library in Witton Street

Archant

This is a Cheshire town not content to rest on the glories of its past, as Janet Reeder finds out

Undoubtedly Northwich is an attractive place to stroll though with its black and white timber framed buildings in what is now a conservation area.

Clearly every effort is being made to enhance its traditional ambience but that doesn’t mean it is a place that relies only on its illustrious past to attract visitors.

Indeed Northwich is one of those places that crops up regularly in lists of best places to live. It’s friendly - even to outsiders - has a thriving shopping area and good schools. It also harbours ambitions.

One recent addition to the town is the museum Lion Salt Works, Britain’s newest heritage attraction, a £10m centre that gives fresh insight into the story of salt, for which Northwich was once famous.

Visitors can enjoy the likes of the ‘subsiding house’ and the thrill of theatrical lighting, sound and film evoking the giant clouds of steam once produced by the site’s huge salt-boiling pans. There’s an on-site cafe and gift shop for those who want to add a bit of retail therapy into the mix.

Other ambitions for the area include the creation of Barons Quay retail and leisure quarter, plans for a centre of gymnastic excellence and the £12.5m memorial court cultural centre.

On a busy day the streets of Northwich are thronging with shoppers around the pedestrianised areas or at the market hall. The local department store and independent fashion shops make this a target for the Cheshire ladies and gentlemen who demand a vibrant mix of independent and high street favourites.

There’s a healthy variety of businesses here too, from dry cleaners and shoe repairers to cake shops and a lovely farm shop with a tea room attached.

Shop in Northwich for antiques, flowers and furnishings, head to the hair salon or local therapists for a spot of TLC or indulge in a glass of wine over lunch in a smart restaurant.

The town is a gateway to other delights such as Blakemere Village in nearby Sandiway which mixes up play activities for young children with grown-up delights such as falconry, candlemaking and even a segway experience.

Another attraction is nearby Arley Hall and its stunning gardens. Not only is it a popular wedding venue but a relaxing place to enjoy the delights of its restaurant and shop.

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