Star comment: Big dreams for future of our city
As we have said on many occasions, it is great news that Debenhams is coming to Wolverhampton.
Its 65,000 sq ft store will open in October, creating 70 jobs.
We hope this will not only be a catalyst for an increase in footfall for the Mander Centre, but for the city centre too.
It will be the centrepiece of the £35 million revamp of the complex and is a welcome boost to the city.
After the tragic closure of BHS in Dudley Street, this is just the shot in the arm Wolverhampton needs.
It is a fantastic and well-loved brand, which we know shoppers here will love.
There is huge potential in this city but it often struggles to attract some of the big names of retail who overlook us in favour of trendy developments at the Bullring and, to some extent, Telford.
But we feel this city is on the up.
Multi-million pound investments at the train station, the Midland Metro extension, and our burgeoning engineering sector means Wolverhampton is an untapped market.
A thriving high street is a sign of a healthy city. That can only be powered by a strong economy.
So it is of critical importance that Wolverhampton council leaders and the new West Midlands Mayor Andy Street make sure they are banging the drum for the city.
We need to make sure that investors have no excuse to put their money elsewhere.
By delivering quality skills and education to our young people and attracting new cutting-edge employers, we can ensure that Wolverhampton does not fall behind our neighbours.
Similarly, it is important to recognise that business is changing rapidly to meet a constantly changing society.
We cannot afford to be stuck in our ways.
We need to be flexible and innovative in our approach.
If we are stubborn enough to stand still, a world of opportunities will pass us by.
Wolverhampton’s decision makers need to think and dream big.
For too long many people have been led to believe that it is a city lacking aspiration.
We know that not to be true.
Like we know that we are a proud city and a proud people.
We make not always shout about our successes but we every reason to stand tall.