You may not spend a lot of time thinking about it, but your local town centre has a significant impact on your life. A pleasant town centre is a hub for your life, allowing you to grab your necessities, socialise with friends and family members, and feel part of something. Even if you aren’t overly active in the local community, knowing that there are places which provide employment, fun and a sense of belonging is comforting.
If you are thinking about moving to Hitchin, or you already live here but haven’t ventured into the town centre too often, it is time to change. When you get to know Hitchin town centre, you start to feel at home.
Support your local buinesses
One factor that is very much in favour of Hitchin town centre is that there is a broad range of independent businesses. A common complaint in the modern era is that town and city centres become homogenised. No matter where you go, you see the same shops, offering the same products and services.
In some ways, there is a lot to be said for consistency. No matter where you are, knowing that you can pick up what you need is reassuring for some people. However, when every town centre looks the same, you can live anywhere, and you certainly don’t feel as though you belong, or that there is anything special about your local area.
Thankfully, this is not the case with Hitchin town centre. No matter what you are looking for, there are unique, boutique and bespoke options to choose from. Also, residents and people who care about the local community are usually behind independent businesses. When you shop locally, you support the community and the economy, which hopefully drives further improvements in the local area.
There are independent food retailers, offering the finest in local produce. Whether your focus is on the tastiest produce or you want to lower your carbon footprint, supporting local producers is never a bad idea.
Cover all your shopping needs in Hitchin
Of course, there are times when you think that small and independent stores are great, but you need a larger store to cover a lot of your requirements. Hitchin does also have high street names such as Waitrose and M&S, so even when you need to shop on a grander scale, you can still do so in a small and local manner.
Mind you; if you plan on spending a large part of your day traipsing around shops, you’ll need some sustenance. This is where the collection of local coffee shops, not to mention the familiar big name brands, perk you up. Rose Buds and Taste Buds sit comfortably alongside Starbucks so no matter how you like your coffee, you can do so with ease in Hitchin. Anyone looking for something more substantial will enjoy the excellent selection of restaurants in the town centre.
Perhaps your interest in Hitchin town centre lies in what it offers for the evening, as opposed to the day time. Those of you keen to look your very best can choose from several hair and beauty salons, and then when it comes to restaurants and bars, you have everything to make for a fantastic night out.
It may be that you want to take a step back from retail outlets, and if you do, you’ll be delighted to learn that market culture remains part of weekly life in Hitchin town centre. There are market options four days a week, so no matter your schedule, you should find a time to meander through interesting artefacts and items. Even if you aren’t in a buying mood, there is always an opportunity to stand and chat with vendors and other shoppers.
On a Tuesday and Saturday, the market operates as a general market while on a Friday, you have the opportunity to sift through bric-a-brac. On a Sunday, Hitchin market operates as a car boot sale, so if you are more interested in selling than buying, this could be the day of the week that appeals to you.
If you are more interested in crafts, the last Saturday in the month is the day for your diary, because this is an opportunity to meet local makers. It may even be your opportunity to sell your products if you are that way inclined.
Stretch your legs in Hitchin town centre
You shouldn’t think that Hitchin town centre is only useful if you want to spend money, there are plenty of open spaces where you can relax, unwind or stretch your legs. Bancroft Gardens is the most significant public space closest to the town centre and you can spend a great deal of time here.
The bandstand is a natural meeting point, but if you want to be more active, you can do so. There are tennis courts and a bowling green while the children’s play area is extremely popular with youngsters and their parents. The formal garden allows more space to take a stroll, but for a centralised open space, Bancroft Gardens is more than adequate.
If you are feeling more energetic and you can handle a steep incline, you will be rewarded with stunning views of the town centre by ascending Windmill Hill.
If all the talk of exertion and activity has left you feeling out of breath, don’t worry, because you can grab a seat in the town centre. The heart of Hitchin offers plenty of public seating and if you find yourself in Market Place, be prepared to be entertained. A lot of people like to watch other people go by, but there is often art and cultural events on view, providing free entertainment and plenty of talking points.
Hitchin town centre may be small, but it is beautiful and perfectly fit for purpose. A lot of people focus on Hitchin’s suitability as a commuter hub, but for many people, the area has so much to offer they don’t need to look too far. If you like the pace of local life and need a hub that provides so much of what you need daily, Hitchin town centre makes you feel at home.