Rooftop restaurant remains on the menu at Regent Arcade for 2023

Businesses at Cheltenham’s Regent Arcade have been boosted by a better than expected 2022 and now ambitious plans for a rooftop restaurant and bar are a key target for the year ahead.

By Andrew Merrell  |  Published
An artist's impression of what the proposed Regent Arcade rooftop restaurant could look like overlooking Regent Street.

Exciting plans for a rooftop restaurant at Cheltenham’s Regent Arcade are firmly in the frame for 2023, following on from a better than predicted 2022 and an especially good Christmas period for the town’s popular shopping arcade.

Centre manager Scott Lahive said most retail and leisure tenants in the centre, which joins the High Street with Regent Street and is home to the likes of JD Sports, sushi restaurant KIBOU and Tivoli Cinema, had enjoyed an increase in sales over the last few months.

Lahive said he hoped to be able to reveal names of new businesses joining the town centre stable soon and confirmed that by the middle of the year there could be much more news about plans to redevelop the rooftop atrium into a restaurant and bar.

But, he was also keen to ensure the exciting positive news and interest in the centre did not whitewash over the very real economic challenges.

‘We are not naive enough to think it is all rosy out there. We expect the next two months at least to be tough, partly because they always are at this time of year anyway,’ said Lahive.

Well aware the better-than-expected 2022 figures for Regent Arcade are compared with those of a 2021 nobbled by social distancing measures imposed to contain the Covid-19 pandemic, Lahive said the year had nevertheless been one of ‘excellent growth’ for many, with takings for some up by of 50 per cent.

His positive news is timely, coming on the back of reports the UK achieved ‘surprise economic growth’ of 0.1 per cent in November 2022, meaning a much anticipated recession could well be avoided. 

As for the rooftop restaurant, the scheme is still making its way through the initial planning stages. The determination to proceed with the scheme, which will require considerable investment, remains strong because of interest from prospective tenants, he revealed.

Lahive said what eventually happens with the scheme and the bigger picture with Regent Arcade is linked to the detail of a redevelopment of Cavendish House, on the opposite side of Regent Street, which is also owned by Regent Arcade owner Canada Life Investments.

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