2020 was a year like no other. The challenges of the Covid-19 pandemic impacted several aspects of our own lives, from the way we work, socialise, shop and more, as well as the lives of our businesses and our town centre. Despite this, there were several positive things which happened in 2020, which showed that community spirit, innovation and resilience, are just some of the reasons which make Wimbledon a great town!
New Businesses and Exciting Pop-Up Experiences Landed in Wimbledon
Over the last few months, Wimbledon has seen several small and independent businesses join the town centre, bringing unique product offerings, modern concepts and pop-up experiences, with them.
Centre Court Shopping Centre was brimming with activity, from a new pop-up market exclusively for the festive season, new businesses Heyland & Whittle, Sense Aroma and Wimbledon’s first zero-waste store Zero, as well as a free art exhibition from The Wimbledon Group, showcasing the brilliant work of local artists.
Plus a trendy cocktail bar, a home decor store and a new toy shop have arrived in Wimbledon, providing even more options to shop, eat, experience and love local!
For the full story on new businesses in Wimbledon, click here.
Local Events Continued in a Covid-Safe Way
With our thinking caps placed on firmly, our team here at Love Wimbledon, came up with some brilliant ideas to deliver fun FREE events and activities for locals to enjoy, throughout various levels of restrictions. The cancellation of our Big Screen Tennis and Winter Wonderland events, drove us even further to provide the community with some joyous and safe fun for all!
- Family Events:
Our ultimate Halloween Pumpkin Hunt saw families/friends hunting down our hidden pumpkins across town and answering questions along the way for a chance to win some brilliant prizes offered by our businesses! Our much-loved outdoor Monthly Markets also returned in a smaller format (to allow for social distancing), having been adapted for Covid-19 and customers being reminded to use contactless payment were possible.
- Christmas in Wimbledon:
The festive spirit could be felt in Wimbledon, as early as mid-November, with our sparkling 25ft Christmas Tree lighting up the entrance to Wimbledon Station. Adapted to serve food only during periods of tighter restrictions, our Christmas Markets on The Piazza continued to be an outdoor shopping destination and an opportunity to feel the magic of Christmas, whilst Wimbledon got it’s first Reindeer Trail experience with integrated Augmented Reality, leading a virtual Santa’s Grotto.
- Other activities:
Bringing our favourite childhood characters back into town, a large Wombles mural with a strong environmental message, came to life along the railway tracks into Wimbledon in October. Boards in the foyer of Wimbledon Station were also replaced by the Wombles encouraging us to travel smart, reduce/reuse/recycle, go green and love everything local!
We thank those of you who took part in our various events or showed your support in other ways. If you missed some of the above then don’t worry – check back to our website for more news and events in 2021!
The Community & Business Pull Through Together
If there was ever a time to demonstrate the strength of a community, that time was definitely in 2020.
We saw a tremendous effort from businesses supporting local organisations and wider initiatives (e.g. NHS and key workers), whilst the community showed an overwhelming response to help feed those in need and support the vulnerable. There are so many heroic examples of this such as Wimbledon Guild receiving overwhelming support from the local community and Francis Grove donating space to a Wimbledon-based hospice.
Such a response could be seen from as early on as April 2020, and there seems to be no signs of it dwindling!
Many new developments are taking place in Wimbledon this year. Click here for more exciting details.