Friday, 31 July 2020 18:39

GALLERY: Opening day at the Swindon Designer Outlet in March 1997 Featured

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JUST over 23 years ago a complex that was once the town's industrial heart began a new lease of life as shopping centre.

The historic Great Western Railway Works, where generations of Swindon families had worked, closed in the mid 1980s.

Its reincarnation as the Swindon Designer Outlet a decade later proved a huge success, drawing shoppers from all around the region to boutiques housed where locomotives had been built.

One loco born there, City of Truro, was put on display until 1999. Others followed in its tracks and the current resident is Ditcheat Manor.

These images show what a big occasion the opening ceremony was for the town - and hark back to a time when shopping was possible without the need for face masks or social distancing.

Read this article on the Gazette and Herald here...

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