A vibrant new shopping and leisure destination is opening in Felixstowe in time for Christmas bringing a much needed boost to the seaside town

Great British Life: Beach Street in Felixstowe is a place to shop and spend leisure time. Image: Nathan DumlaoBeach Street in Felixstowe is a place to shop and spend leisure time. Image: Nathan Dumlao (Image: Archant)

The first phase of Beach Street Felixstowe, a new independent, family-friendly leisure and shopping destination in Suffolk created with upcycled shipping containers, is opening just in time for Christmas shopping.

Believed to be the UK’s first seafront ‘boxpark’, the urban-style complex is located at Manning’s Amusements on Sea Road, a popular year-round destination. Beach Street is a landscaped site, wheelchair and buggy-friendly, with outdoor seating in the communal area. Dogs on leads are welcome.

From Friday, December 4, a variety of festive products will be available to buy including artisan gifts, art, craft, home decor, and handmade candles, whilst fashion outlets offer a range of styles in women’s clothing and accessories. Visitors can complete their visit with a sweet treat at The Waffle Shack.

Painted in vibrant colours, the converted containers are home to these independent traders:

Great British Life: A model showing the new Beach Street destination believed to be the first seafront boxpark in the UK. Image: Beach StreetA model showing the new Beach Street destination believed to be the first seafront boxpark in the UK. Image: Beach Street (Image: Archant)

Cosy Aromas – A little shop bursting with delightful scents thanks to its array of soy wax melts and candles.

The Gallery Box – An array of artworks and artisan goodies from local artists, art materials and souvenirs. With evening art workshops and a kid’s art club.

Puzzle - Selling chic, timeless Scandi-inspired fashion, statement jewellery, accessories and homewares.

Simply Lovely Jubbly – Selling handmade gifts made by local crafters and vegan-friendly bath bombs and soaps.

Great British Life: Beach Street will be home to a range of interesting independent traders. Image: Annie SprattBeach Street will be home to a range of interesting independent traders. Image: Annie Spratt (Image: Archant)

SusieSparkles – Italian clothing and accessories for women.

The Coastal Drift – Sharing a love of the Suffolk Coast through fine art, unique vintage finds, inspired gifts and seasonal floristry.

Tinx Boutique – For women who love Boho-inspired fashion.

The Waffle Shack – Selling a range of sweet waffles, crepes and ice cream shakes for the whole family.

More will follow in early 2021:

Shore, Coffee by the Coast – Serving speciality coffee from Crude Coffee Roasters in Bury St Edmunds.

FourThreePizza – Selling New York style pizza by the slice or whole 20” pies.

Hazel & Co Yoga – Felixstowe’s only purpose-built yoga studio also offering holistic therapies.

The Smokehouse – Felixstowe’s only smoked food restaurant.

On Saturday, December 5, the market area behind Beach Street will also be holding a Christmas market with stalls, live music, photo booth and Santa’s grotto.

All retailers will be strictly adhering to government guidelines to ensure they operate in a safe and responsible manner. Visitors should observe social distancing and wear masks if they plan to go inside any of the shops or the amusements.

Where you can shop and click local this Christmas

The entrepreneurial brothers, and founders and owners of Beach Street, Charlie and Jonny Manning, took inspiration from city destinations such as Boxpark Shoreditch and POP Brixton. Knowing that a similar contemporary project would be a quirky addition to Felixstowe’s seafront, the idea for Beach Street was born.

Charlie Manning says: “We’re really excited to open the first phase of Beach Street Felixstowe in December, especially as we secured planning permission pre-Covid and were raring to go earlier this year. The first lockdown caused delays but we’re now pressing ahead with a Christmas opening. We want to assure everyone that the site is Covid-secure so people can have a relaxing visit.

“We’re building a unique community of traders, while offering local people and tourists a fantastic new experience. More traders will be opening in early 2021 including a variety of eateries and Felixstowe’s only purpose-built yoga studio. Visitors have more to look forward to.”

Jonny Manning adds: “We’re looking forward to seeing Beach Street come to life when it opens. Each container has been bespoke-made offsite, and installed here – watching the complex take shape has been incredible.

“We’re proud to be adding Beach Street Felixstowe to the 75-year evolution of the Manning’s site. I can’t wait to finally see visitors coming along for a great day out, taking it easy in the outdoor area and enjoying fresh sea air while buying a few presents. Everyone is welcome.”

Beach Street is an exceptional newcomer to the Suffolk coast; it is creating a much-needed boost for local retail and hospitality businesses at a time when many are struggling due to Covid restrictions. The development is set to be a major attraction for both locals and holiday makers, bringing significant footfall, investment and revenue to the local economy.

Only a few units are left in this current phase of Beach Street. The second phase of Beach Street is due to open in 2022 and include plans for expansion. All enquiries: hello@beachstreetfelixstowe.co.uk.

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