SWINDON’S first Vintage and Retro Festival has succeeded in attracting more people to the town centre, resulting in a 27 per cent rise in visitors as well as increased sales over the weekend.

Organised by The Brunel Shopping Centre, which is managed by First Investments Real Estate Management, the Vintage and Retro Festival took place over the weekend of March 1 and 2. It saw the shopping centre’s two main shopping malls assigned to two themed decades – the 1940s took over The Arcade and The Plaza became the 1950s.

There was live music throughout and a music event in the evening, as well as fashion, make-up and hair demonstrations. Classic cars and motorbikes were on show.

The Brunel also hosted the Made in Swindon Exhibition, which featured a number of the town’s history and heritage groups, as well as showcasing inventions and products created by Swindon people.

With a target to increase overall spend in stores across the two days and raise footfall by 10 per cent, the centre management saw a 17 per cent year-on-year boost for the Saturday and a 27 per cent year-on-year increase for Sunday.

Steve Fawke, general manager, said: “The Vintage and Retro Festival was very well received by our shoppers and we know that people travelled from across Wiltshire to attend.

“Our retailers have told us that they saw the best trading for a long time on that day, with vintage-inspired clothing selling out in one store. One large national jewellery retailer has even reported a 65% increase in sales compared to their normal Sunday trading levels and our independent traders also benefitted.

“We’ve already started planning for The Brunel’s Vintage and Retro Festival 2015.”