No surprise over Butter Market

I cannot understand why there is any surprise that much of the new Butter Market is unused.

And I don’t really believe it is due to the current economic conditions.

What we have now is a poor man’s Burlington Arcade, the character of which is totally out of keeping with Chichester city centre.

North Street isn’t Piccadilly, and nor would we wish it to be.

By all means, give the facade a facelift, but why re-design and gut the interior?

Unless any part of the interior was structurally unsound, why wasn’t it left as it was?

Covered markets are invariably slightly tatty and usually more loved because of it.

Places like Oxford have large areas of covered markets which are both tatty and successful, and they haven’t bothered to import Burlington Arcade.

But never mind other places.

What we had was, I believe, what we wanted – a welcoming and well-used group of units, which both residents and visitors seemed to appreciate.

Any architects/planners/consultants involved in the Butter Market’s re-vamp would have done well to observe just how well these units were used, if necessary installing video cameras to watch our shopping habits there.

I may be wrong, but I am not aware that such monitoring took place.

Now we have an overly poshed-up space which is unwelcoming and which has units too large and too costly for the original holders to afford. And they are missed.

Articles and discussions in the Chichester Observer before the redevelopment took place, feared that this would be the outcome. So it really shouldn’t be any surprise.

Jan Chaundry

St Cyriac’s, Chichester