Opening a Business in Chichester

Where is Chichester?

Chichester sits in the fertile coastal strip between the South Downs National Park, the AONB of the ancient Harbour, the RSPB reserve of Pagham and the sandy Wittering beach. One of the sunniest places in Britain with a stunning supply of local foods and a Cathedral City with 2000 years of history, Chichester is a wonderful place to live, work and invest, Its close proximity to London, three airports and several sea links makes many marketplaces accessible.

Why open your business in Chichester?

A deeply historic lifestyle city for the modern entrepreneur, Chichester has the perfect offer with not just its dynamic shopping precinct, but its culture and heritage and many options in the hinterland for well-being, fine foods and a relaxed lifestyle. Chichester is no stranger to the downturn in the nation’s high streets but has been protected by its many social, financial, shopping stock and demographic advantages from the devastation suffered my many other towns. So it remains a much sought-after destination to enjoy life, whether work or play.

If you’re looking for a retail opportunity, with as many outlets as Bluewater with over 190 independent retailers and 120 national brands within a square mile, why not come and join our 625 businesses in the Chichester BID area? Replacement rates in the city are better than the regional average, which is the lowest in the kingdom anyway. Voted in 2019 the UK’s 2nd most agreeable place to live by the HMG happiness survey, the 4th most resilient UK High St by Cushman and Wakefield in 2018, regularly in the top 7% of 1300 cities for its digital footprint, and nominated the 32nd favoured shopping district in the country by HGH in 2019 – what’s not to like? We also have a retail incubator space in the city if you want to start small and experiment without too much initial outlay.

If you’re looking to relocate or open an office in the city, the Chichester BID area fits snugly inside the Roman walls with a variety of classical buildings offering office accommodation. We also have two business incubator premises offering contemporary shared work spaces if you want to start small and even our comprehensive cafe culture offers start-ups a quick entry into city life for the price of a cup of coffee.


Invest Chichester

Invest Chichester is dedicated to showcasing the city to businesses looking to start, locate or grow here. Highlighting what the city and our business areas have to offer to regional, national and international companies and organisations.

Apprentices and Further Education

Sitting in the heart of a wide arc of opportunities from Southampton, through to Winchester, Guildford, Gatwick and Brighton, Chichester is West Sussex’s only university town. Together with the OFSTED “outstanding” Chichester College Group, the City welcomes 16,000 students a year for training opportunities in practically every national skill on the books.

How to get here

Road – Travel on the M23 or A3 direct from London or the M25 orbital to join the A27 south coast route with links 30 miles either way from Lewes to the New Forest. National Coach links run from Poole to London via Gatwick, you can cycle from Dover to Plymouth on national cycle route 2 or enjoy 100 miles of country walking along the South Downs Way only 15 minutes drive away or a 10 mile ride from the city centre.

Rail – direct services to London leaving every half an hour on a 90 minute journey with a Gatwick stop 50 minutes on the way, with more frequent direct services anywhere from Southampton to Brighton and even Salisbury and Bristol. With one change via Havant the Portsmouth to Waterloo line is also accessible.

Air – LHR, LGW and Southampton Airports are all within striking distance inside 90 minutes

Sea – Britanny Ferries operate to Northern France from Portsmouth which also berths the smaller cruise ships, with the largest boats left to Southampton, the UK’s biggest cruise terminal and the UK’s 2nd largest trading port. The Channel Tunnel is 2 hours away, on dual carriageway all the way.

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