As part of the Destination Chesterfield and the Derbyshire Times features, we’re delighted to announced our Partner, Jonathon Dickens has been crowned the ‘Chesterfield Champion of the Week’!
As a Chesterfield resident, here’s Jonathon’s take on why business in the town is something to be proud of…
What are the main benefits of working/running a business in Chesterfield?
Having lived in Chesterfield all my life, I’ve grown up seeing a lot of long standing businesses continue to have a strong presence in the town. As Chesterfield historically is a market town with traditional values, the local community really engage with local businesses.
We see this across many different sectors – the professional services sector which I work in has a strong concentration on Saltergate, with many businesses working together rather than in direct competition to each other.
The location of Chesterfield itself is great for national trade as well due to the transport infrastructure we have in place.
Which local business would you recommend and why?
Dales & Peaks Estate Agents immediately spring to mind here – they have a similar profile to us in that they are also going through a significant growth phase and have achieved this by identifying new avenues for the business, such as focusing on property sales in addition to lettings. They are also family run and locally owned.
How would you describe Chesterfield to a potential visitor? (What sets us apart from other towns?)
There is one notable landmark in Chesterfield that no other town can rival – the crooked spire, which provides a unique visitor attraction and local talking point.
For a visitor you are on the doorstep to one of, (if not the best!) national parks in the UK in the Peak District, as well as an improving nightlife scene in both the town centre and the outskirts, such as Chatsworth Road.
Which development do you think will most benefit the town?
There have been some great local developments, or re-developments in this case such as the new Premier Inn that has completely revamped the old landmark Co-op building. It’s great to see huge global brands like this seeing Chesterfield as an opportunity to thrive.
Chatsworth Road is now very much on the social scene map, and we’re expecting further development at the Waterside which will bring further trade into the town.
Which events are working well in Chesterfield and what kinds of events would you like to see in the future?
The Festival of Cricket and Chesterfield Marathon have been fantastic over the last few years and continue to grow. The Sparkle Walk which Ashgate Hospice run raises some great awareness for one of the town’s key charities.
Chatsworth Christmas Markets are expanding every year, and it would be great to see something like this in the town centre as well. After all, Chesterfield is a traditional market town, so is already set up to hold seasonal events like this. Drawing people into the town centre at this time of year when they would usually travel elsewhere could provide a huge boost to the whole town.
What excites you most about the future of Chesterfield?
There are a lot of entrepreneurs in Chesterfield who are always developing new business ventures. The great thing about these people is they are always willing to give it a go. If we all adopt this mentality there will be a bright future ahead.
Where in Chesterfield would you recommend for a lunchtime treat?
Bottle & Thyme is a recent success story – the food and staff are great, and that fact that it is always busy means it is currently one of the go-to places to eat. It’s a great asset to the town.
If you’re looking for something more traditional, then you can’t beat a pint of Stones at the local working man’s club!
What can we change or develop further within Chesterfield’s town centre to help it thrive?
It has been tough for the retail sector recently with so many household names struggling on the high street throughout the country.
There is light at the end of the tunnel though, and it’s great to see the redevelopment of the Co-op building by the Premier Inn chain. Hopefully this will set the precedent for other large brands to follow
What advice would you give to someone establishing a business/beginning work in Chesterfield?
Chesterfield has fantastic foundations and infrastructure for new businesses to establish. There’s a great business support network in the town for start-ups, as well as access to a lot of professional entrepreneurs who are wanting to give something back into the business community.
The Chesterfield public seem to take to local businesses as they like to see businesses investing in their community.