High Street Heroes in Brentwood
PUBLISHED: 16:08 19 October 2015 | UPDATED: 14:30 21 October 2015
Brentwood is a place of history and heritage, as well as being home to some of the most famous faces on TV. Emily Talbut explains more about the mix on Brentwood’s high street
In recent years, and thanks to the successful TV show The Only Way Is Essex being based there, Brentwood has become arguably the most famous town in the county. This has possibly contributed to increased infiltration of Brentwood’s High Street by national chains, but despite this, the town retains a rural feel with plenty of trees, open spaces and homegrown stores as well.
A century ago, the town was a popular place of rest for travellers, particularly at the White Hart Inn, which dates back to 1480 and yet still retains its historical charm today. The famous pub works with the Brentwood Brewing Company, formed in 2006, serving these local beers alongside other mainstream drinks.
The High Street itself has undergone some major redevelopment in recent years, but not at the expense of local traders as they continue to offer a range of specialist stores catering for fishing, quality home cinema equipment and golfing equipment, among many other things.
There are even outlets owned by the TOWIE cast themselves including a plus-size boutique, a sports nutrition shop and also a delicatessen. Although the likes of owners Gemma Collins and the Faiers sisters often face criticism, there is no denying their involvement in helping to preserve a locally-ran High Street. Other stores featured on the show also receive a boost in sales thanks to increased exposure, including unusual gift and homeware store The Olive Branch and Boy About Town barbers.
Elli Constantatou, Tourism Marketing & PR Manager for the Visit Essex guide, explains: ‘The show has really raised the profile of Essex and brought a lot of business into the county — especially in Brentwood.’