Part of the joy of exploring a new city is in discovering the independent shops that it has to offer…
Independent businesses have long had a home in Gloucester, whether its the dozens of honest tradesmen who complete jobs on a daily basis or the shop keepers stocking their stores with wonderfully unique items. Although many big businesses might choose to Birmingham investment or other neighbouring cities, the success of these independent businesses proves that Gloucester’s retail market is a profitable one that’s well worth investing in.
Next time you choose to visit us here make sure to drop in at one of these independent shops:
Taffeta & Lace
Opening in 1985, Taffeta & Lace offer a complete boutique bridal service with dresses ranging from £250 to £1500. They also stock a good range of accessories such as headdresses, veils and jackets that can be matched to the dresses they have in stock.
Although you might not be able to commit to some of the bizarre and crazy designs that their clients have asked for, if you’re considering getting a tattoo in Gloucester then you should make Black Letter Tattoo Studio your first port of call. Lacey, Dean, Lewis, Shaun and Jack are the resident artists at this well established studio, between them they offer a wide range of styles and sizes, so no matter what you’re looking for they’ll be able to get you inked!
Thinking of picking up a gift for someone whilst you’re in town? College Street Originals stocks a big range of truly unique gifts – from collectable ornaments of beloved characters to locally made pottery. It’s worth popping in just to look at what they have on offer, you never know what you might leave with!
With over 30 years of experience in the business, Vic and Shirley Foster are the seasoned pros in charge of Upstairs Downstairs – Gloucester’s premier antique shop. There’s everything you’d expect here from ‘shabby chic’ furniture to smaller items such as vases and ceramics. Come for a snoop around and then stop off for a tea and scone at Shirley’s Tearoom.
Well look no further than the dazzling array of festivals and events that you’ll find here every year.
There’s something for everyone here in Gloucester; that includes music lovers, theatre buffs and outdoorsy types alike. Throughout the summer there’s a real buzz around the area as thousands of people flock to the area to attend one of a kind arts festivals, unique exhibitions and food conventions. The sun’s been shining for weeks now and everyone here is excited for summer holidays and trips away, but we’re thrilled for what’s going on right here in Gloucester.
Each year there are loads of events for us to visit, in fact there’s so many that we rarely get a chance to see them all! Here’s a run down of some of our all-time favourites:
Barn on the Farm
What started as a handful of unknown bands playing in a barn has turned into one of the most popular independent music festivals in the UK. Over Farm is the location for this award winning festival, an idyllic rural setting which is perfect for the consistent lineup of chilled out indie bands and acoustic acts that grace the handful of stages each year. Previous headliners have included Tom Misch, Ed Sheerhan, Ben Howard and Matt Corby.
When is it?
Usually first weekend in July
£100 for the weekend
Where is it?
Over Farm, Gloucester
Cheltenham Jazz Festival
Organised in association with BBC Radio 2, the Cheltenham Jazz Festival is one of the biggest of its kinds in the UK; a partially free event that prioritises accessibility making this a great choice for families older and younger alike. Both Cheltenham and Gloucester are well suited to host music events with plenty of historic buildings that make for an atmospheric night out such as Tewkesbury Abbey and Cheltenham Town Hall, not to mention purpose built stages like The Helix Theatre and Big Top.
When is it?
May Bank Holiday
Free areas with ticketed events
Where is it?
Montpellier Gardens plus other venues
Gloucester History Fest
Huge droves of people visit Gloucester every year for its historical value alone, the city’s rich heritage is one of the reasons it’s such a popular destination and there’s no better time to enjoy it than during the Gloucester History Festival. Hundreds of events take place over the course of a fortnight with fun activities for kids, musical performances, as well as scintillating talks by best-selling authors and professors.
When is it?
Mostly free (see site for details)
Where is it?
Various venues across Gloucester
Gloucester Rhythm & Blues Festival
The Rhythm & Blues Festival is one of the most well-attended in the area and for good reason. For a whole week the city of Gloucester is teeming with world-class musicians who you can watch completely free of charge at a variety of independent pubs and cafes. If you’ve not had the chance to visit us yet then this is the perfect chance to do so as it gives you the opportunity to enjoy some great live music whilst being able to explore the city as you like.
There’s a veritable army of local oven cleaners on hand in Gloucester ready to help you out with all types of problems and issues.
Have you got a filthy oven in need of scrubbing?
Maybe you’ve just moved into your new place in Gloucester and have found that your oven is filthy, or perhaps you’re a landlord looking to get all the ovens in your properties done in one fell swoop. If you’ve got a filthy oven on your hands and don’t have the time to get your hands dirty then have no fear, there are loads of hardworking folks in the local area who should be able to get you out of a bind.
There’s a long-standing tradition of hard-working grafters in Gloucester, so it’s hardly surprising that there are loads of oven cleaning franchise firms clamouring to get your custom. The only question that remains is: which oven cleaning business are you going to choose?
The men and women at Oven Pig cover the area of Gloucester, Cheltenham and Forest of Dean – they’re a friendly bunch who understand that nobody wants to do this messy job for themselves. The chemicals that Oven Pig use are completely biodegradable, so you don’t have to worry about harming the planet whilst you get your oven back to tip-top condition.
Leisa is the owner/founder of this family run business who are cleaners of the first order! Their philosophy is ‘Don’t Replace…RESTORE!’ and they’ve applied this idea to everything that you can imagine: leather, upholstery, patios and ovens. They also offer ‘End of Tenancy’ cleaning for landlords or tenants who are keen to restore their properties back to a tidy state.
Offering a custom oven cleaning service across the Gloucester area, Oven Busters have been operating since 2004 and have cleaned over 10,000 ovens in the process. They use a van based soak tank in order to get your oven completely cleaned from top to bottom, this also has the added benefit of saving your kitchen from getting messy in the process.
18 Durham Cl
Mallows Oven Cleaning
Established in 2008, Mallows Oven Cleaning are a local, family run business that offer a fast, professional service to homeowners looking to get their ovens, microwaves, BBQs, hobs and rayburns back to showroom condition. They pride themselves on their customer service, so you can have a chat with them as they work or simply leave them to get on with the task at hand.
You’ll find all the usual suspects when it comes to chain restaurants, but it’s a much better idea to support one of the many fantastic independent restaurants we have here in Gloucester.
We have a huge variety restaurants here in the city, perfect for lunches, dinners or breakfast and all of them with them with more than their fair share of character and charm. A visit to Gloucester isn’t complete without a trip to one of these excellent eateries all of which offer fantastic service, tasty food and affordable prices.
Swerve the McDonalds next time you come to stay and book with one of these excellent independent restaurants:
This organic and natural food place is so much more than a simple cafe. In addition to serving a great selection of salads, sandwiches and jacket potatoes you can choose from a fresh salad bar as well as soups and home-made cakes. The management at Peppers have worked hard to build a solid reputation as a local arts hub exhibiting work from local artists, and hosting a stage for the Gloucester Rhythm & Blues Festival each year.
Besides serving one of the best curries in Gloucester, Nepalese Chef is consistently rated as one of the finest restaurants in the city. Don’t let its outward appearance fool you, despite looking a bit shabby from the outside this is a sharply presented cafe which serves authentic Nepalese food without the use of artificial pastes or bases. Although there a number of other curry houses in the city that will do in a pinch, you’ll be far better off booking in here.
Open 7 days a week from 9am-11pm in the fashionable Gloucester Docks area, So Pie have brought the humble pie into the 21st Century. Besides serving ample sized pies with a variety of sides dishes, you can also buy a decent fry up. Since opening So Pie has become a solid favourite for locals and visitors alike. especially those suffering from hangovers. Drop in to grab a pie or one of many other classic English dishes.
St Lukes House,
Mediterranean food is enjoying something of a renaissance at present, with many different cuisines adopting the ‘tapas style’ to improve the ease and speed of service. Nowhere else in Gloucester does this style of cuisine work as well as in Sebz Cafe. Wonderfully casual yet still serving dishes with style and panache, drop in for lunch between Monday to Thursday to make the most of The Three Tapas Special: three tapas dishes for £9.95.
In the world of food it’s often the simplest ideas that are the most successful and it doesn’t get much simpler than this. On Toast specialise in everything toast related making this the perfect place to pop into for a quick lunch or even a late breakfast. Special toasties such as their Italian (mozzarella, basil, tomato and oregano) and Meaty Marathi (chicken tikka, onion bhaji and mint yoghurt) have earned them some serious accolades amongst the Gloucester press including Takeaway of the Year from the Gloucestershire Lifestyle Awards.