To discover the nature of our town’s businesses we used a system devised by Scotland’s Town Partnership. This divides all businesses into 7 categories:
Convenience Retail – daily essentials
Comparison Retail – non-essential goods
Retail Services –hairdressers, beauty salons, wellbeing providers, post office, etc.
Financial Services – Banks, accountants, and financial advisors
Leisure Services -Cafes, restaurants, take away, serviced accommodation, self-catering accommodation, sports and leisure activities, pubs, museums and galleries.
Other non-retail – care homes, factory units, undertakers, places of worship, health centres, libraries, emergency services.
Business and property services – builders, electricians, plumbers, estate agents, solicitors.
We then broke the town into 2 sections – businesses within 200 metres of the Main Street and those out with this area.
All Callander Businesses
As one might expect in a town whose local economy is dependent to tourism, most local businesses fall within the Leisure Services category. We compared Callander with some other towns with large tourist economies and found that leisure services were significantly lower in all cases– Eyemouth (29%), Helensburgh (20%), Saltcoats (20%) and Irvine(17%)
Callander Main Street Area
Callander’s Main Street is dominated by leisure services. This can be explained by the number of serviced and self-catering businesses within the catchment area. Our retail sector accounts for a total 35% of all Main Street businesses.
Callander – Main Street retail mix
Callander has a relatively low level of convenience retailers in the Main Street. We are well served by our local butcher, 2 bakeries, 2 off licences, 2 supermarkets and 1 convenience store and recently Feed and Stoves has expended their range. In contrast we have an exceptionally high level of non-essential retailers. This can be explained by the number of businesses catering specifically for visitors and a relatively high number of charity shops.
Main Street – Evening economy
Compared to other tourist-focussed towns, Callander has a limited range of options for those looking for evening entertainment. Most dining options are at one of Callander’s 7 hotel/Bars with only 2 businesses offering restaurant service after 7PM. It could be argued that both residents and visitors would benefit from a more diverse evening economy.
Callander – outwith Main Street
Outwith the Main Street we continue to see the dominance of leisure services – in this case this can be explained by the number of self-catering businesses located in a rural setting. Property and other non-retail businesses are predominately located in the out-of-town business units at Keltie, Lagrannoch and Geisher Road.
The number of vacant Main Street properties has decreased since the last CAP and redevelopment is underway on both Ciros and The Eagle. Post Covid-19 it is likely that more properties will become vacant.