Retailers pile in on zip wire debate

Around 130 retail and hospitality businesses have signed an open letter supporting a controversial plan to install a zip wire between two Liverpool landmarks following widespread criticism, saying it could provide a shot in the arm to the struggling sectors. 

“As businesses operating largely in the hospitality and retail sectors, we depend heavily on tourists and visitors coming to Liverpool,” the letter said. “Our businesses depend on a thriving city that continues to draw people to experience our wonderful attractions.” 

The letter added that the Covid-19 pandemic had “exacerbated the decline of footfall” in Liverpool and other cities and towns, and the zip wire scheme could provide an “economic boost to the retail and hospitality sectors”. 

  • Full list of signatories below

The open letter is in direct response to a petition this week campaigning against the scheme, which was approved by Liverpool City Council in June. 

Critics have said the zip wire, being brought forward by Zip World, a North Wales-based adventure business, would “mutilate” the area, known for its listed buildings and monuments of cultural and historical importance. 

The zip wire would connect St Johns Beacon and Central Library, passing over St. Johns Shopping Centre, Hood Street, Roe Street, St. George’s Place, St. John’s Lane and Gardens and William Brown Street. 

Zip World founder Sean Taylor claims that the attraction, due to open in May 2021, could bring up to 300,000 visitors to Liverpool every year. His company already operates three Zip Worlds in Wales. 

However, the earlier petition this week, launched by resident group Engage Liverpool, hit back at the plans and urged the council to reconsider its decision. The petition was signed by high-profile figures including Screenwriter and producer Jimmy McGovern, poets Roger McGough and Levi Tafari and actor Alexei Sayle. 

Richard Kemp, Liverpool’s Liberal Democrat Leader, said the attraction could put off as many people as it attracts. 

In the latest petition to the council, Liverpool business leaders including Frank McKenna, chief executive of the business support group Downtown Liverpool, Bill Addy, chief executive of the Liverpool BID company, and John Hughes, chief executive of Liverpool Nightlife CIC, are listed among those who have pledged support for the project. 

McKenna said in a statement to media that the hotel, bar, restaurant and shop owners that had signed the open letter were people “suffering the consequences of the recent pandemic and the general trend of declining high streets”, and needed “a bustling city centre” in order to survive.

The full list of signatories is as follows:

Frank McKenna, Downtown Liverpool in Business 

Steven Hesketh, The Savvy Group 

Jonny Lacey, Bongo’s Bingo

Nicola Byrne-Woods, Urban Calm, Met Quarter 

Kevin Doran, Living Brick Hotels 

John Sutton, Lost Soles, Albert Dock

Chris Devaney, RLB360

Christaki Georgiou, Christakis Greek Taverna

Bill Addy, Liverpool BID

Perry Ng, Golden Dragon Food Limited

Gary Wakefield, Lili Bizarre 

Liam Fortune, Buffet Restaurant Limited 

Madie OutaaraftBakchich, Bold Street 

Amine El Gueddar, Kasbah, Bold Street 

Paolo Cillo, Il Forno, Duke Street 

Terry Stockton, Hippy Chick, Baltic Market 

Sean Roche, Aintree Gin 

Paul Jagota, Anar Express, Bold Street 

Darren Simpson, Met Quarter Flowers 

Tracey Shelvey, Kids Cavern, Met Quarter 

Adam Sutton, Adam Sutton Estates 

Antonietta Bagnardi, Antonietta Bakery 

Maria Cillo, A Tavola 

Jenny Wan, SIDA Far Eastern Supermarket 

Dave Critchley, Lu Ban 

Alex Bower, Hotel Anfield 

Francesca Kearns, Francesca Couture 

Neil Wan, Chy, Renshaw Street 

John Sinclair, Peaky Blinders

Paul Lin, GoCre8 

Chris Reza, La Parilla, Bold Street 

Otto MelloukiOrganico 

Danny Boon, Matou

Moya McQueen, Morgan Jones Hair 

Ergin Mullah, Elif, Bold Street 

Mo Abdullah, KO Grill 

Chris Foulkes, Relish 

Natalie Murray, The Bagelry 

Christian Boyle, Bar 54 

Sean Royden, Ink Bar 

Charlotte Owens, Meatless 

Hussain Etaaat, Shiraz, Williamson Square 

James Sullivan, Yellow Submarine Bar 

Alfie McCaughran, Black Pearl Bar 

Rhys Jones, Rhys Jones & Co 

Brendan Wyatt, Transalpino, Bold Street 

Mark Ellison, Johnny English Fish & Chips, Bold Street 

Mark O`Leary, Rebel Barbers, Bold Street 

Andreas Doukanaris, Sarto Menswear, Victoria Street 

Gennagh Thompson, Jimmy’s Bar, Bold Street 

Andy Zhuobin, Mei Mei 

Natalie Shilton, The Nakery 

Christopher Hakeem, The Butterfly and The Grasshopper 

John Gilchrist, The Industry Consultants 

Melissa Newness, The Vines 

Julie Georgiou, Key Lime Coffee, St Johns Shopping Centre

Mani Jones, Storm Menswear, St Johns Shopping Centre 

Nicole Cree, The Bag Shop, St Johns Shopping Centre 

Mohammed AslimB:U, St Johns Shopping Centre 

Jean Kennedy, Bunnies Children’s Clothing, St Johns Shopping Centre 

Lauren McCormick, Peacock, St Johns Shopping Centre 

Yan James, Miles Accessories, St Johns Shopping Centre 

Jade Lark, Koko, St Johns Shopping Centre 

Louise Shelbourne, Perfect Getaways, St Johns Shopping Centre              

Harleigh Corran, Hands Boutique, St Johns Shopping Centre 

Was Anjum, CS2, St Johns Shopping Centre 

Jeannette ZidaruMoreGlam, St Johns Shopping Centre 

Louise Ward, Catwalk, St Johns Shopping Centre 

Jaz Kumar, Missie, St Johns Shopping Centre 

Kaleem Hussain, Kiss, St Johns Shopping Centre 

Harjinder Kaur Glamour, Forever, St Johns Shopping Centre 

Dimi Boyuklieva, Berlin Doner, St Johns Shopping Centre 

Nina McCormick, Chantilly Lounge 

Jennifer Santos Darias, Cool Britannia 

Ben Mayer, Johnny Googles, North John Street 

Sandra Lawton, Yanni’s Fish & Chips 

Peter Hunter, Liverpool Hospitality Exchange 

Danielle Youds, Liverpool Philharmonic Theatre 

Adam Wan, Yum Cha 

Alan Cosgrove, Happy Days Ventures 

Brian Connor, A Bar Called Teddy’s 

Steve Smith, The Dispensary 

Jay Baker, Down The Hatch 

Conrad Sharp, Woo Tan Scran 

Joe O’Garra, Ripolin 

Paul Kelly, St. John’s Shoe Repairs, St Johns Shopping Centre 

Alexandra Shepherd, Baby Melanie, St Johns Shopping Centre 

Suneer Edakavil Kottayil, The Liverpool Gift Shop, Williamson Square 

Hellen Newey, 200 degrees Coffee 

Michael Cox, Hanover Hotel 

Lois White, Print Works Hotel 

Graeme Clark, The Scholar Bar 

Michael Achilleos, Grael 

Mark Hayes, The Red Berry Club 

Mike Robinson, Kaspas Deserts 

Joe Harper, Exec Menswear 

Harris McWilliam, Ditto Coffee Liverpool 

Claire Cox, Liver One Limited, St Johns Shopping Centre 

Hamaad Akhtar, Storm Ladies, St Johns Shopping Centre 

Aftab Razzaq, Foot patrol, St Johns Shopping Centre 

Paul Jones, Keep Time Watch Repairs, St Johns Shopping Centre 

Geoff Wakefield, Music Film Direct, St Johns Shopping Centre 

Waqas Javed, Liverpoolhair, St Johns Shopping Centre 

Claire Pye, Shush Clothing, St Johns Shopping Centre 

Suwayd Khan, Hairclub, St Johns Shopping Centre 

Steve Johnson, The Midland Public House 

Vincent Tyrrell, Quarters 

Megan Crosbie, Sweeney’s Bar 

Angela Cowing, The Shakespeare 

Saad Rowen, Go Falafel 

Charlotte Donoghue, Say It with Diamonds, Met Quarter 

Yulun Wun, Root Coffee 

Aaron Shino, Dale Street Kitchen 

Anthony Devine, Brownlow Inn Hotel 

Anvar Yusuf, Toros Steakhouse 

John Hughes, Liverpool Nightlife CIC 

Melanie Ravenscroft, Baltic Beer Garden 

Jamie Motlagh, Pub Invest Group 

Marcus Magee, Hilton Liverpool

David Wade Smith, Webticket Master 

Louise Kemp, The Core Collective 

Dale Allman, Union 22, Dale Street 

Paul Kierman, Nelly Foley’s 

Gary Daly, Moloko 

Jimmy Boland, Rubber Soul  

Dean McClafferty, Irish House 

Darren Smith, Ruby Blues 

Sean Traynor, Celtic Corner 

James Brackley, Einstein 

Jo Pringle, Lago  

Sam Harris, Sgt Peppers 




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