Bargain hunting: The best shopping outlets

Posted on: 14 September 2010 by Mark O'haire

With the summer sales now over, our resident Shopahollic picks out the best selection of shopping outlets in the UK.

bargain hunterThe next shopping sales won’t arrive in the UK until the New Year but if you can’t wait until January, we’ve picked out the best outlets nationwide for you to hunt out a bargain.

Freeport Braintree Outlet Shopping Village

Charter Way, Chapel Hill, Braintree, Essex CM77 8YH

An outlet for all budgets.

Opening Times: 10am – 6pm (Monday to Wednesday, Friday & Bank Holiday); 10am – 8pm (Thursday); 10am – 7pm (Saturday); 10am – 5pm (Sunday).

Transport: By Train (Regular services from London Liverpool Street Station to Freeport Braintree Station); By Bus (Free shuttle bus services every 15 minutes from Braintree Town Centre); Car Parking: over 1,500 free car parking spaces.

What To Look For: Over 80 stores; latest shops (Bedeck, Aquascutum, Le Creuset, GAP, Mamas & Papas). Save up to 50% or more at most stores. There's a wide range of stores from clothing and homeware to entertainment.

Entertainment & Refreshments: Burger King, Pizza Express, Cafes and nearby restaurants at the Freeport Leisure Park with its cinemas and bowling.

My Choice: Clothing (Aquascutum, Austin Reed, Barbour, GAP, Jaeger); Shoes (Clarks, Hush Puppies); Homeware (Denby, Waterford Wedgwood); Entertainment (Bose).        

Bicester Village

50 Pingle Drive, Bicester, Oxfordshire OX26 6WD

A haven for the designer brand addict.

Opening Times: 10am – 8pm (Monday to Saturday); 10am – 6pm (Sunday, some shops open at noon).

Transport: Trains from London Marylebone Station or Birmingham Moor Street Station to Bicester Village North Station then Bicester Village Taxi Bus: ask for Bicester Village ticket which includes the bus journeys or from Oxford to Bicester Town Station a short walk; By Bus from Oxford Magdalen Street to Bicester Village via ‘Stagecoach Service’; Car Parking: free car parking space.

What To Look For: Over 130 brands; latest shops include (Fendi, Elizabeth Hurley Beach, Yves Saint Laurent). Up to 60% reduction on most brands with exclusive international fashion and lifestyle designer brands.

Entertainment & Refreshments: Italian restaurant Carluccio, French bistro Villandry, Starbucks and Pret A Manger. Nearby Attractions (Blenheim Palace, Warwick Castle, Waddesdon Manor and of course the Cotswolds).

My Choice: Clothing (Burberry, Max Mara, Pringle, Polo Ralph Lauren, Valentino); Shoes (Bally, Church’s, Jimmy Choo); Homeware (Bodum, Oneida, Samsonite) and a little pampering (Penhaligon’s and L’ Occitane).

Clarks Village

Farm Road Street, Somerset, BA16 0BB

A traditional bargain outlet.

Opening Times: 9am – 6pm (Monday to Wednesday, Friday & Saturday); 9am – 8pm (Thursday); 10am – 5pm (Sunday).

Transport: By Train (Nearest Stations are Castle Cary, Taunton and Yeovil with 30 minutes drive by car); By Bus (Local Bus running to and from Yeovil, Taunton, Bridgewater, Wells, Glastonbury, Bath and Bristol); Car Parking: 1,400 spaces.

What To Look For: Over 90 stores; Latest Shops (Aquascutum, Yumi Fashion, Fiorelli, Osprey London, Dickies). Up to 60% off recommended retail prices.

Entertainment & Refreshments: Outdoor adventure playground, King Arthur’s Castle and traditional carousel for the kids, food court, Burger King, the Food Factory, Cafe Fresh, Starbucks and Pasty Presto.

My Choice: Le Creuset, Hallmark Cards, Moss, GAP, Lakeland Leather, Dartington Crystal, Ecco, Portmerion, Monsoon, Crabtree and Evelyn, Edinburgh Wollen Mill and of course the very own Clarks.

Boundary Mill Stores


A well established value for money outlet since 1983. For the four stores details, see below.

Colne Store

Vivary Way, Colne, Lancashire BB8 9NW

  • Tel: 01282 856 200)

Opening Times: 10am – 8pm (Monday to Saturday); 10am – 5pm (Sunday).

Entertainment & Refreshments: Nearby attractions (Skipton Castle, Pendle Witches, Wycoller County Park), coffee shop and restaurant including fish & chips.

Shiremoor Store

Park Lane, Shiremoor, Newcastle-upon-Tyne NE27 0BS

  • Tel: 0191 297 2420

Opening Times: 10am – 8pm (Monday to Saturday); 10am – 5pm (Sunday).

Entertainment & Refreshments: Nearby attractions (Beamish Open Air Museum, Alnwick Garden, Hadrain’s Wal), coffee shop.

Walsall Store

Junction 10, retail Park, Bentley Mill Way, Walsall WS2 0LE

  • Tel: 01922 618 200

Opening Times: 10am – 8pm (Monday to Saturday); 10am – 5pm (Sunday).

Entertainment & Refreshments: Nearby attractions (Dudley Castle & Zoo, Cadbury World, Royal Air Force Museum), coffee shop.

Grantham Store

Gonerby Moor, A1 Grantham, Lincolnshire NG32 2AB

  • Tel: 01476 591 001

Opening Times: 9:30am – 7pm (Monday to Saturday); 10am – 5pm (Sunday).

Entertainment & Refreshments: Nearby attractions (Lincoln Castle, Lincoln Cathedral, Boston, Belvoir Castle), coffee shop.

What To Look For: Largest Quality Mill with four stores from the north to the midlands. Up to 75% off recommended retail prices; from ladieswear, menswear, accessories, homeware, books, DVDs to arts & crafts including hundreds of top name brands.

My Choice: John Smedley, LK Bennett, Minuet, Pierre Balmain, Ondermark, Jane Shilton, Timberland, Antler, Christy, Joseph Joseph, Meyer, pool Pottery, Stuart Crystal, Whittard of Chelsea, Yankee Candles, M&S Outlets (Colne & Walsall Stores only).

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