|Address:||Steamer Trading, 22 Bridge Street , Chester CH1 1NQ
If we’re allowed to pick favourites, Chester would be one of our favourite stores in one of our favourite cities. Not only was it the first Steamer Trading shop to open in the North of England (just a month ahead of Beverley), but it has been one of our most ambitious building restorations, too.
Founded by the Romans with the name Deva Victrix in the year AD79, the four main roads of Chester – Eastgate, Northgate, Watergate and Bridge- date back to that time nearly two thousand years ago. Steamer Trading occupies part of the famous ‘Dutch Houses’, named for their distinctive architectural style, that form part of Chester’s famous ‘Rows’. Unique in Britain, these medieval buildings consist of shops or dwellings on both the ground and first – or row – levels.
Although much of Chester was rebuilt by the Victorians in a style that was referred to as Black and White revival, the Dutch Houses are one of Chester’s earliest buildings, dating back to 1660. Unfortunately, by the 1970s the building had fallen into such state of disrepair that the Council were forced to acquire the building and undertake emergency repairs to secure its future.
These repairs left little of the original character of the building intact, so when Steamer Trading acquired the building in 2010, the uninspiring interior had been split between a building society and a gym on the upper floors. After clearing out partition walls, false ceilings, saunas and tanning beds, we discovered a Victorian timber beamed roof that gave us the idea to create a wonderful, light-filled space that would create a ‘wow’ when customers ventured deep into the shop.
When Retail Week magazine visited the store they described it as ‘Tardis-like. It is far bigger on the inside than might be apparent from the outside’. Chester Civic Trust liked the restoration, too. Honoring Steamer Trading with the Chairman’s Special Award for 2012, they commented that ‘the rear of the shop opens up into a delightful light and airy 3 storey space with a central stairwell’
With so much space to play with, our Chester store has one of our widest selections of products. There’s lift access to all floors so it’s easy to get around – but if you prefer, our ever-friendly team will be delighted to help our customers find whatever they are looking for. We’ve got a wide selection of coffee machines ready to be tried and tested and a working induction hob, so we can show you how cookware works, too. And for fans of the very best in chef’s knives, we have an amazing selection waiting to be admired.
How to find us
Our address is 22 Bridge Street Chester, CH1 1NQ. You’ll find us a few minutes walk from Chester Station, or if you’re driving, we’re within easy reach of all of the city centre car parks.
For visitors with limited mobility, we hope you’ll find the shop easy to navigate – there is a lift to serve the upper floors and ramps to reach different levels within the store. It can get a bit narrow to the very front of the shop, but please let us know if you’d like any assistance and our friendly staff will be delighted to help.
Awards for Steamer Trading Chester
Chester Civic Trust, Chairman’s Special Award, 2012
You can call us during store opening hours, or email or write to us using the details below - or, of course, you can come in and see us – we’ll always make you welcome!