It’s a busy crossroads that’s the beating heart of Ashton-on-Ribble but it’s seen better days – or has it?Advertisement
Lane Ends is an area most Prestonians know well and with a number of high profile closures you could be forgiven for thinking the rows of empty shops might spell the end of it.
However, the area is beginning to show flickers of new life and looks like it could eat its way to a revival.
Booths and Lloyds Bank pulled out of the area and in their place a number of small independents have begun to fill the vacated units.
Booths stopped trading a year ago leaving a big empty space in Woodplumpton Road but the former mini-supermarket has been sold to a Manchester-based developer and a new tenant is expected soon.
Lloyds building in Blackpool Road was shut with the bank saying the demand just wasn’t there – and it expected customers to use its city centre branch.
Now plans have been lodged to convert the ground floor into a new restaurant, which is thought to be an Indian restaurant.
Two new restaurants and cafes already operating are the Health Kicks Kitchen and Volare Italian restaurant.
The healthy eating cafe Health Kicks is the brainchild of Philip Smith and Lloyd Everett, where you pick your carlories and then your food.
Volare opened in Blackpool Road just down from Health Kicks in early January and is attracting good reviews.
The Italian cafe opened in early January and Rebecca Aspin says the Lane Ends location was picked because of its reputation and footfall.
The 22-year-old business partner of its owner Giuseppe Bonura said: “We picked lane ends due to its reputation as being a shopping area with plenty of people around throughout the day.
“We think we couldn’t have picked a better location outside of the city centre from the first day we’ve had plenty of local people interest, and plenty of regular customers. The community has really been supportive and very encourage which has been great to see.”
Away from food and the Lane Ends area has become the base for a growing dog photography business.
CatsDog, founded by photographer Cat Race, has its studio and offices in Tulketh Brow.
Cat said: “We picked lane ends because it’s a nice area that’s accessible for our clients. It’s close to Haslam Park which is a popular location we frequently shoot at. It’s also good value for money and close to town with a community feel.”
Tulketh councillor and leader of Preston City Council councillor Peter Rankin said: “It’s very good news. Lane Ends has been struggling for some years but this is a great turn-round in fortune. I hope that local people support the new restaurants and cafes.”
What do you think about Lane Ends? What businesses would you like to see open? Let us know in the comments below