Escape Room Coming to Coronation Square
The ongoing regeneration of Coronation Square, in Cheltenham West, is set to get another major boost, when the disused toilet block is converted into a permanent Escape Room, in the Spring. Planning permission to convert the toilets, is being sought by innovative social enterprise Cheltenham Coworking CIC, who already run the popular Create on the Square Tea Bar and coworking space on Coronation Square. Local shoppers will be pleased to note that the plans also include the re-opening of an accessible toilet room for the public.
The toilets in the Edinburgh Place car park, behind the Coronation Square shopping centre were shut down in 2011, at a time when the shopping centre was largely rundown. In more recent years, Coronation Square has seen a healthy restoration of activity, with new shops being opened by the likes of British Heart Foundation, Savers and the Cheltenham Science Centre.
However, the regeneration of the Square’s fortunes still has some way to go:
“In 2016, we opened Create on the Square in a retail unit that had been empty for over 12 years, on a rundown shopping centre, with over half of the 30 units in a similar state, because we believed that the area has a great deal of underused potential. Now, with only 2 units not claimed, it is great to see our conviction was well-founded.
However, the Square was so empty for so long, it is a challenge to draw more local people back there. We are expecting the Escape Room to help increase footfall to the Square and help ensure that the regeneration continues.”
Pete George, Director, Cheltenham Coworking CIC
Escape Rooms are a growing, popular activity, where small teams attempt to escape from a locked room, by solving a series of fun challenges and puzzles, typically in under one hour. Cheltenham Coworking launched Escape Rooms Cheltenham, in 2017, and currently run monthly Escape Room events in hired premises.
The decision to create a permanent escape room venue, was spurred on by the enthusiastic response of escape room fans, with even Gloucester Cathedral requesting an escape room event in their crypt. The conversion of the toilet blocks as a venue was also warmly encouraged by Cheltenham Borough Council.
Plans for the venue are to be up and running by the end of April, but more updates will follow…