CHRISTMAS SPIRIT: Warwick Watchmakers and Jewellers watchmaker Larissa Mack and owner John Walsh are looking forward to the Christmas trading period.
CHRISTMAS SPIRIT: Warwick Watchmakers and Jewellers watchmaker Larissa Mack and owner John Walsh are looking forward to the Christmas trading period. Michael Cormack

Economy boom is the best gift of all

ROSE City Shoppingworld could be on track to post its highest Christmas revenue in five years, says centre manager Jason Gard.

Mr Gard said he was encouraged with the number of shoppers through the centre in the early Christmas trading period.

"We're seeing some good traffic - it's up from last year," Mr Gard said.

"The current weather is affecting some people.

"But we're still seeing a lot of people out and getting ready for Christmas.

"We're on track to have one of our better years in the last five years - this pre-Christmas period could be our largest in the last five years."

Mr Gard said he hoped Rose City residents would shop local, instead of travelling to Toowoomba or other centres.

"Anything you could need in the lead-up to Christmas, you can get it in Warwick," he said.

"We encourage people to shop local and support local businesses and keep their money in Warwick."

Mr Gard said the centre had a number of initiatives to keep people shopping in Warwick.

"We've kicked off our Santa photos and we've got a fairly high standard Santa photo," Mr Gard said.

"We were one of the sponsors of the Christmas parade on the weekend and one of the reasons was to try and encourage people to come in and do their shopping here.

"In the lead-up to Christmas we've got a lot of different activities as well, such as craft activities, gift wrapping services and a wishing tree."

Mr Gard said the best present anyone could get would be rain.

"The current weather isn't great for a lot of people," he said.

"If we could get a bit of rain, that would be the best present for a lot of people."

Warwick Watchmakers and Jewellers owner John Walsh said he felt his store was on track for a good pre-Christmas period.

"It's been quite good," Mr Walsh said of the activity so far.

"It's been hard work but I think the traffic has been about the same as recent years so far.

"It normally gears up as Christmas get closer.

"It's always quieter at the beginning of the pre-Christmas period - it's the way people are."

The store was broken into in late October but Mr Walsh said they were ready for orders leading up to Christmas.

"We're back on, we've stocked up again," he said.

It is also hoped expansion plans announced for Rose City Shoppingworld in October will bring in greater revenue in future years.

In stage one of the expansion, the McConaghy Group plans to build a new Coles supermarket to replace Bi-Lo, new specialty shops and a new food court, and an extension of the underground carpark.

Stage two involves an expansion of Big W, with a new loading dock.

It is believed the expansion will create around 100 new jobs once it is complete.



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