Big up Treorchy!
The small town of Treorchy in the Welsh valleys has beaten far bigger rivals to be named high street of the year in a nationwide competition.
Home to just 6,000 people, Treorchy triumphed at the Great British High Street awards after impressing judges with a welter of community initiatives that had reinvigorated its struggling local economy.
“In our area in the valleys of south Walesthere is not much industry and times are tough,” said Adrian Emmett, who runs The Lion pub in Treorchy. “But in the face of adversity we have come up with an entrepreneurial model. There are areas that have received a lot more funding than us. This is about self-help.”
The Rhondda town boasts a website, arts festival and “hop, shop and save” scheme that trades advertising space on local buses for in-store discounts.
In recent years membership of the Treorchy chamber of trade had swollen from 30 to 120. “If the community didn’t shop local we wouldn’t be here,” said Emmett of the high street, where 80% of the shops are independent.
Treorchy, which boasts a website and arts festival, triumphs over bigger rivals
The name of Treorchy is indelibly linked the World over with the famous Treorchy Male Voice Choir, and indeed this town, the only one in the Rhondda ever to host the National Eisteddfod, can truly claim to be the cultural capital of Fawr and Fach, with th