MAJOR changes are afoot in the retail landscape of Stroud.

Plans have recently been submitted at the former Charcoal Grill and Halifax units in the town centre while both the former Imperial Hotel - now called The Stroud - and the former Warehouse nightclub - now called Trio - have recently opened.

In addition, the owners of Penny Farthing in Stroud High Street suddenly announced that the cafe was closing shortly before Christmas.

New plans have been submitted at the former cafe for a new business serving Japanese food with the intention of operating as a licensed restaurant.

A change of use application has been submitted at the Georgian Tea Rooms in Rowcroft so that it could also be used as a bnb accommodation.

Meanwhile, construction work is also ongoing at the former Shaws unit, the two units which will replace the former Wilko unit in the Five Valleys Shopping Centre and at the former Halfords branch, where a Tesco Express is set to open in the new year.

The plans at the former Halifax in Kendrick Street would see the building reopen as an independent clothing shop, offices for rent and a residential apartment.

It is currently open as a temporary art exhibition. 

The owners have asked SDC for planning permission to link the first and second floors with an internal staircase.

The plans at the former Charcoal Grill in George Street, which has been a derelict grot-spot for several years, concerns ongoing work at the unit.

Owners say they intend to strip out the kitchen and hygiene facilities and replace the recently removed curved façade.

To view the plans for the former Halifax branch, visit -

The plans for the former Charcoal Grill unit can be seen at -

A planning document reads: "The former restaurant which has been redundant for many years has become severely dilapidated.

"The curved bay windows at the front of the shop have collapsed, the plastic windows and frame seem to have been held together with duct tape.

"Refurbishment was not an option - the windows were removed very soon after the recent sale to facilitate some stabilisation of the floor structure.

"The existing structural opening will be retained.

"The new frontage will replicate the recently removed façade.

"Internally the fittings (kitchen/serving/ hygiene facilities) are to be stripped out.

"New kitchen and serving fittings to be installed within the existing fabric.

"We do not believe the work will harm the heritage asset of the property or the area.

"The proposed aims to enhance, improve and maintain this building."

Commenting about changes in the town, Tony Davey, chair of Stroud Chamber of Trade, said:

"It is without question that 2023 has been challenging for high streets nationally, with Stroud far from immune from these challenges.

"As national chains collapsed or changed their business model, and banks withdrew from our communities, we have been left with the tombstones of their failures in the empty premises left behind. 

"Independent businesses have not been immune from this but to a lesser extent.

"With each departure, however sad and impactful that may be, often comes new opportunities. 

"Even in this difficult economic climate there is an appetite to start, rebuild and renew.

"While it can take a few months, we are seeing unutilised buildings being refurbished and reopened. 

"National chains continue to see Stroud as a town somewhere they wish to do business and somewhere worth investing in."