Classy operator moves into Royal Victoria Place

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WITH Christmas almost upon us, one high-end shoe retailer has joined the party by opening a store in Tunbridge Wells.

The new outlet in Royal Victoria Place is further evidence that Ecco, one of Europe’s foremost producers of quality footwear, is refusing to be deterred by the economic doom mongers and embracing a policy of genuine expansion.

In September it relocated its store in Canterbury; last month it opened in Bath; at the start of December a presence was established in Salisbury; and on Friday last week the Ecco party arrived in Tunbridge Wells to delight the more discerning shoppers of west Kent.

Now with 25 stores across the country, Ecco is keen on making itself known in a big way.

The company’s Michelle Calcraft told Archant KOS Media at the store opening: “We’re getting the brand name more recognised in the New Year. There are a lot of shops that sell Ecco, but they are only able to show a small range of what we do.”

With Ecco – a Danish, family-owned company founded in 1963 – operating an-ever growing number of shops, it is able to display much more of what it produces. Indeed, only Ecco models are stocked.

The emphasis is on comfort, although this is not achieved at the expense of style.

“Our shoes are just so comfortable,” said Calcraft. “The moulded sole units are flexible – like a footprint in the sand. There is a seal around the sole and the shoes are watertight and shock-absorbent.

The full-grain leather is fully pigmented, so it doesn’t stain or scar easily.”

The Ecco spectrum is broad, with pretty much everything from hiking boots through to more fashionable footwear available.

The investment in Tunbridge Wells is also resulting in the creation of eight or nine jobs. And with the store staying open until 8pm until this weekend and then 9pm in Christmas week itself, it seems everyone in the Wells has reason to be cheerful.

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