Trinity Walk: one year on

6th May 2011'Opening of Trinity Walk .''PICTURE: MATTHEW PAGE
6th May 2011'Opening of Trinity Walk .''PICTURE: MATTHEW PAGE
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TRINITY Walk will celebrate its first birthday this weekend.

As centre managers prepare to welcome their 10-millionth visitor later this month, they have admitted that trade has been challenging.

After 15 years in the making, with a deal that very nearly collapsed, the £210m centre opened on May 6 last year, boasting 30 stores.

When clothing store Moda opens this weekend, it will become the 20th name to have been added since then.

But three retaillers Peacocks, La Senza and Pulp were unable see out the year and closed due to struggling trade.

Centre manager Susan Mendoza said: “Everybody has found it challenging in this climate. It is a national picture and I am sorry that some of the shops have gone.

“But we are looking to replace those retaillers and there are other deals happening that will we will be announcing over the next few weeks.”

Ms Mendoza said she was pleased with the centre’s progress during its first year and was looking forward to the opening of a Barclays branch and Fit24 gym this summer.

She said there were also plans to install benches at the centre.

She said: “Because we opened under a lot of pressure, the benches weren’t put in. But we will look to improve that.

“It is going to be an exciting month, because as well as celebrating our birthday we will be welcoming our 10-millionth visitor.”

The Trinity Walk project was left in the balance due to a cash crisis in March 2009, when the Anglo Irish Bank pulled the plug on financing the project.

In December 2009 a consortium of developers, Sovereign Land, AREA Property Partners and Shepherd Construction, bought it from administrators KPMG.

A weekend of entertainment has been planned at Trinity Walk to celebrate its first birthday.

Stilt-walking cake ladies will unveil a giant birthday cake, and will be giving away free cupcakes from 11am to 3pm tomorrow.

The Wildcat Dolls will also perform at noon.

On Sunday, the South Milford Brass Band will perform for customers, and on Monday shoppers will be greeted by a giant birthday present hosting an event with face painting, balloon and badge giveaways.