A community of Abergavenny businesses and independent traders have decided to come together this Christmas to create a special festive celebration along Abergavenny’s Nevill Street.

First established in the town in 1241, Nevill Street has a rich history which the businesses who reside in the street hope to celebrate this year with a number of Christmas events to encourage people to visit the street and it’s many excellent independent stores and businesses.

At a meeting in late October this year, Nevill Street traders discussed plans and ideas for the best way to mark and celebrate this year’s Christmas celebrations in the street. The meeting proved to be a big success with many businesses including the Chronicle coming together in the space of just a couple of weeks with some great ideas on how to celebrate and promote the street and local businesses and traders.

As part of the ‘Step into Nevill Street’ campaign a number of events have been organised, hosted by several businesses along Nevill Street and kicked off with the Wool Croft hosting a free Christmas Shopping Showcase on Wednesday November 24 and a knitted Star Workshop on Thursday November 25, whilst on the following evening Feodora Hair and Beauty Studio hosted a Christmas shopping evening. Further events throughout December including Christmas workshops, lunches, craft events and late-night music is also planned and to be hosted along the street by businesses including Marlows Place, Madame Fromage and the Trading Post.

A spokesperson for the Nevill Street traders group said: “It has been brilliant to see so many local businesses and traders from Nevill Street get involved in this and has been a real team effort”.

Abergavenny Town Mayor Tudor Thomas visited the street on Wednesday December 1 to see the displays and speak to Nevill Street businesses who have helped contribute to the event.

There is also an opportunity for members of the public to help name the Nevill Street Reindeer and Fawn that will be specially displayed in St John’s Square through special loyalty cards that have been distributed to Nevill Street traders and businesses. Cards will be available to be picked up from the reindeer and fawn in St John’s Square.

The aim of the cards is to help people explore the street and support its independent businesses, with the loyalty cards containing five reindeer stamps which can be stamped on visits to businesses along Nevill Street. Once a person has received five stamps, they will be entered into a free prize draw for a Christmas hamper full of Nevill Street goodies including vouchers from Feodora Hair and Beauty Salon, Cooks Galley kitchenware and a voucher from Eclipse Hypnotherapy for a 1 hr relaxation session. To enter the prize draw cards must be completed with contact details and handed in to any participating Nevill Street businesses by 5:30pm Saturday December 20, with the winner announced before Christmas.

As part of the plans to decorate the street, plywood reindeers and fawns – made by United Joinery manufacturers in Nevill Street, Abergavenny, and designed by Bettina Reeves - have been chosen to line the street in a reindeer trail welcoming visitors with each business specifically decorating their reindeer sitting outside their business premises. The businesses have also spoken and collaborated with Town Council to discuss best way forward with plans and have even received a £1,000 grant from Welsh Government under the Transforming Towns programme.

As part of that team effort, many of the Nevill Street businesses have played a big part in contributing to this year’s celebrations including Ginevra Croft at the Wool Croft who set up the Nevill Street Facebook page and has allowed use her crafting area for painting and decorating of reindeers. Speaking about the Christmas plans on Nevill Street, Ginevra said: “I’ve felt really heartened by how much a small group of independent businesses can get done when we work together. The reindeer trail is going to look great, and as a craft business, its wonderful to see business owners getting creative. We really hope to see lots of visitors enjoying their time in Nevill Street.”

A number of businesses also contributed their help towards designing the posters which have been distributed around town promoting the street events with Parry’s Estate Agents, the Optic Shop and Pink Angels helping with photocopying, translations into the Welsh language and design layout.

Penny and the team from Pink Angels are enjoying working in collaboration with local businesses. Penny said: “Even though we are not retail as such, we are always willing to help businesses where needed and we are especially enjoying working with our business neighbours in Nevill St, regarding the Reindeer trail. It is so nice to see many of the businesses contributing to what will be a fun time in the street during December”.

United Joinery owners have also lent their support to the Nevill Street businesses supplying the plywood for the reindeer trail as well as a monetary donation.

Owen Davies from Gwagle, a shared workspace business, has been delighted with the collective efforts shown by the different businesses along the street, saying: “Our location on Nevill Street is very important to us and our co-working community who regularly spend their time away from the office shopping and relaxing in the town centre.”

“The Step Into Nevill Street campaign is a wonderful example of businesses - from a range of sectors - coming together to give our street that special feel and sense of destination for Christmas. We feel much closer and aware of our business neighbours now we are part of a collective effort and have no doubt this is just the beginning!”

For more information on the ‘Step into Nevill Street’ campaign please visit the Nevill Street Abergavenny Facebook page.