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The Council has launched a new website that features a series of interactive maps to the Royal Borough’s key shopping and leisure areas. It includes world-renowned shopping destinations such as Harrods and Harvey Nichols, but the website’s strong point is the recognition it gives to the specialist, independent and unique shops, boutiques, cafes, bars and restaurants that contribute so much to the success and vibrancy of the Borough.

The number one reason why people visit the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea is to shop – each year, over 13 million people come here, spendinga staggering £1.3 billion. Visitors and residents alike can now make the most of what our shopping areas have to offer due to a new guide developed by the Council.

The first online resource of its kind in London, On the Map (www.rbkc.gov.uk/visit) can be accessed from your PC or from a smartphone, handheldcomputer or other mobile device. Aswell as retail guides, it includes weather information, live travel updates from the BBC and TfL’s Journey Planner.And the ‘Eat, Sleep, Drink’ section has links to the Top Table booking service, Beer in the Evening and Trusted Places websites.

The website maps out the Borough’s five key shopping areas –Notting Hill (including Portobello Market), High Street Kensington, Kings Road, Knightsbridge and South Kensington & Brompton Cross. Shop locations are pinpointed and there are links to the websites of individual shops and other outlets, while the maps are complemented by area guides,local history and interesting trivia.

On the Map is informative, useful and entertaining. It will notonly help the Borough’s annual 1.7 million overseas visitors to discover Kensington and Chelsea’s vibrant and distinguished retail reputation, or lead them to the birthplace of iconic design businesses such as Vivienne Westwood and Mary Quant’s first fashion houses. The Borough’s residents and other Londoners can use On the Map to discover interesting side streets, hidden shopping gems, cool shopping opportunities and the latest places to eat and drink.

Speaking at the launch of the website, Councillor Sir Merrick Cockell, Leader of the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea said: “Onthe Map is the first initiative of its kind in London, developed by the Council to provide a comprehensivere source for shoppers and to support the diverse mix of retailers and highstreets that make the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea the number one shopping destination in the capital.

”While the Council’s in-house IT department was responsible for the website’s development, the Kings Roadand Kensington High Street Retail Forums and the Portobello Antiques Marketing Group were closely involved in the project. The website will evolve and grow, and the maps will develop and functionality will increase.There is no cos tto retailers. More shops, cafes, bars and restaurants will be added. On the Map will help to ensure that our Borough’s shopping areas continue to enjoy success.<

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