“ Famous brands at discount prices. „
Freeport Braintree has really improved over the last few years & with the new Hollister outlet opening last week I think it will encourage other similar retailers to open there as well. You can pick up some great bargains - especially from the Radley outlet store and the Asics shop.
It's busiest at the weekend although they do open late on a Thursday which is good if you need anything at the last minute - especially birthday cards/presents as they have a Hallmark store, Thorntons, Perfume Shop and a Molton Brown so you can get a nice present for someone.
You can also get some great bargains for your home with the various homeware stores that are there.
You can get there via train as there's a train station literally outside the centre, or by car. There's a free car park but if you intend on staying longer than 6 hours you need to state this at the tourist info centre so they can note down your reg number.
Well worth a visit.
Freeport Braintree is a discount shopping village in Braintree, Essex.
There is a huge car park at Freeport Braintree, but I don't drive so I arrive there by train. Freeport has it's own train station just across the road from the shopping village, although the station isn't very nice and is unmanned so I wouldn't like to go there late at night! The shopping village is also served by local buses from Braintree and other parts of Essex.
The shopping village has been built to look like a real village and although this will sound odd, it reminds me of the streets in Disneyland Paris! There are lots of shops - lots of the designers have outlets here offering discounted goods, as well as big high street stores and some shops I've never heard of!
I don't tend to go in the designer shops and mainly go in the huge Next outlet and Marks & Spencer outlet which offer varying discounts on their high street stores. There's also a fab bag shop which is rumoured to be the cheapest place in the UK to buy a Tula or Radley hand bag.
Cadburys and Thorntons have discount shops here if you're a chocoholic and Reebox &Wonderbra also have outlet stores in the village.
As well as all the shops, there is also an entertainments complex with a swimming centre, cinema and several places to eat including a Pizza Express, Prezzo and the bext chinese buffet restaurant in Mid Essex - Aroma.
It's a nice place to visit for a look around, and great for buying Christmas presents. Worth a visit!
NEVER BUY ANYTHING IN REEBOK FREEPORT BRAINTREE SHOP - HORRIBLE SERVES AND 70% FAKE CLOTHES.VERY POOR CHOICE, UNPLEASANT STAFF, MANAGER VERY RUD AND SHOULD BE DON'T WORKING THERE.Has visited in November 2010 Reebok shop in freeport Braintree. I was pregnant and there was week before my labor , but on my request to help me to try a pair of trainers has heard refuse of the shop assistant, and the manager has told that already the end of the working day and she is very tired. It is all has led to my childbirth has begun in this day when I back home. I DIDN'T GET PAIR OF TRAINERS IN END .
Freeport designer Village is built in Braintree, Essex. The area is built on has expanded gradually into a place with lots of things.
In the area their is : A bowling alley, a cinema, a swimming pool, Chicago, Aroma (all you can eat Chinese) and a prezos. Other the other side there is a B&Q, Comet, A golf shop, Carpet Right, Another carpet shop and a halfords.
There is 2 massive car parks for the Freeport designer village, and another big average size carpark other the other side which is still only a minute walk.
In the designer village its self it had lots of shops in a very nice layout. As you walk in their is a big entrance with a fountain and you then walk either way round in a circle of shops. Its all outdoors.
The stores they have in the village are as follows :
All Wellan Good - Cosmetic shop
Antler - Luggage shop
Austin Reed - Clothes shop
Autonomy - Clothes
Bags etc - Bags and luggage
Barbour - Outdoor activity clothing
Barbour Womenswear Clearance - Women's clothes shop
Baron Jon - Men's clothes shop
BB's Coffee & Muffins - Coffee shop
Bench - Clothes shop
Bijoux - Fashion accessory shop
Billabong - Surf and leisure shop
BOSE - Sound shop
Brand Fusion - Sport and fashion shop
Burberry - Clothes shop
Burger King - Food
Cadbury - Chocolate shop
Camille - Women's lingerie and nightwear.
Chapelle Jewelry - Jewelry
Christy Towels - Towels and bathroom accessories
Claire's Accessories - Ladies fashion
Clarks - Adult's and children's shoes and bags.
Coffee Republic - Coffee
Coloroll - Soft furnishings, bed and bathware.
Cotton Traders- Adults and kids casual clothes shop
Crew Clothing - Clothes
D - Selling Diesel - Diesel clothes
Denby Pottery - Kitchen ware
Designer Room - Cheap designer clothes shop . This one is my favorite shop
Donnay - Sports clothes and equipment
Men's and women's fashion - Footwear
Fone Gadgets - Phone shop
Gaggia - Coffee machine shop
Home Bedding & Curtains - Bed and curtain shops
Hush Puppies - Footwear
Intimas - Ladies shop
Jaeger - Clothes
Julian Graves - Snacks and ingredients shop
Karen Millen - Women's fashion and accessories.
Klass - Clothes shop
Kurt Muller - Man and woman clothes shop
Lacoste - Men, women and children's clothes shop
Le Creuset - Cookworks shop
Lipsy Clothing - Ladies clothing
Marks & Spencer - We all know marks and sparks lol
Mexx - Stylish fashion for the whole family.
Mountain Warehouse - Outdoor specialist in clothing, footwear and Equipment.
New Era Cap - Hat shop
Next Clearance - Clothes shop
Nike - Sports shop
Oak Jeans - Ladies designer jeans.
Orange - Phone shop
Past Times - Jewelry
Petroleum - Men's clothes shop
Pilot - Ladies clothes shop
Pizza Express - Food
ProCook - Kitchen Ware
Proudfoot - Leather shop
Racing Green - Men's detailed shop
Reebok - Sports clothing shop
Regatta - Family outdoor clothing
Roman Originals - Women's casual and formal clothing sizes 10-22.
Samsonite - Luggage and accessories.
Sasperilla - Young women's fashion.
Savoy Taylors Guild - Men's clothes shop
Soled Out - Shoe shop
Staccato - Shoe shop
Starbucks - Coffee
Stone - Jewelry
Suits You - Men's suits and tailoring
Ted Baker - Clothes shop
The Paper Mill Shop - Arts and crafts
The Perfume Shop - Errmm perfumes? lol
Thornton's Cafe - Coffee and chocolates
Tommy Hilfiger - Fashion shop
Trespass - Ski wear
Tula - Fasion accessories
Tutti Tuscan Grille - Italian food
Van Heusen - Men's clothes shop
Villeroy & Boch - China and accessories
When Freeport was first built it used to be very busy and used to attract a fair few celebrities. These days when ever I go their its usually empty and not a sign of any celebrities.
What I liked about Freeport when it was first made, their was a kids play area in the middle. I think this used to attract lots of families. They have now done away with it, got greedy, and built more shops on it. This has now lost the appeal to any children. Shopping to children is boring so with a nice play area to play on you may have been attracted.
Another plus point about Freeport is their a train station just across the road from it. Its less than a minute walk.
Rumour has it that about a 2 minute walk from Freeport is that there will be a Primark build in a big unused shop. Weather that will help to attract more customers or drag more away from Freeport? .. Time will tell.
Freeport Shopping Village was opened on the outskirts of Braintree just under six years ago, at which time it came as something of a revolution to this sleepy but fast growing market town, whose town centre consisted largely of estate agents, umpteen charity shops and a couple of department stores which made Grace Brothers seem like Harrods. There was a tremendous hoo-hah from local shopkeepers who feared it would encroach upon their business, and after much debate, the scheme was eventually agreed by the Council, on the proviso that the Freeport outlets wouldnt be allowed to sell, at discounted prices, goods that were currently available on the High Street. This meant that the shops had to agree to sell seconds and end of line goods only, which is essentially what a factory outlet centre is anyway, so after a good deal of fuss, Freeport finally arrived in Braintree.
What the dissenters failed to realise was that Braintree, as I mentioned earlier, was then one of the fastest growing towns in the country, and would soon be filled with people who would be needing jobs, and to their credit, Freeport, both directly and indirectly, provided considerable employment to the town. In building the shopping centre and a number of other leisure facilities, the company played an enormous part in rejuvenating vast areas of wasteland surrounding the town, and in doing so, provided facilities that previously wed had to travel ten miles or more to neighbouring towns to enjoy.
The centre was sold to a company of pension fund managers last year, since which time, the new owners have gradually brought about lots of changes, mostly for the better, although the transformation seems far from complete at the moment. I used to visit Freeport fairly often, but as Ive had less money available during this last year, the trips have become much less frequent; however, the summer sunshine seems to have provoked a growth spurt in my two football playing sons, and they suddenly found themselves in need of new boots and kit, as well as trainers, so off we went to Freeport to see what we could find.
First stop was Donnay, where Ive usually managed to find not only football gear, but sportswear and accessories in general, at huge discounts on the original price, and this visit was no exception. We got the boots at half the original price, together with a few other bits and pieces, including a couple of very cheap polo shirts for my husband to wear for work, so we were immediately off to a good start. I have to say, that apart from the prices, I dont like this shop at all - the rails of clothes are crammed in to the point where health and safety must surely be an issue, and they have an irritating way of hanging the merchandise high up against the walls, almost as high as the ceiling in fact, giving the place a rather claustrophobic feel. Its been closing down for about two months now, although the staff dont seem to know when itll close, or indeed if it ever will, and although I dont like the atmosphere of the place, itll be a shame if it does go, because its a cheap way to keep two growing boys equipped with the things they need to continue playing football.
The other two sports shops, Reebok and Nike, tend to be more geared up for adults, with ranges of casual rather than active sportswear, although we were lucky on this occasion to find the boys some reasonably cheap trainers in Nike. Like the majority of the shops at Freeport, stock turnover is high, and youve really got to be in the right place at the right time to get what youre looking for, especially in terms of sizes. Unlike High Street shops, the stock of a particular item isnt replenished itll simply be replaced by different lines, and they invariably wont order anything for you, as theres no guarantee itll ever become available again.
I think there are about 80 shops here, of varying sizes, and theres quite a good balance of different types of store, although the emphasis is somewhat on the clothes and fashion side. A lot of the big names are here, such as Versace and Burberry, which I must admit hold no interest for me, and which is just as well perhaps, since the discounted prices are still far in excess of what I could afford. Other names include Timberland, Austin Reed, Ted Baker and Karen Millen, together with many other well known brands, all of which can be found on the website, so I wont bore you with a huge list. By and large, I dont tend to frequent the designer outlets, as apart from being too old and too fat, I simply dont have the need for these items in my current way of life. On one particular occasion though, when I saw a jacket I liked at a ridiculously low price, I ended up trying on every size between 14 and 20, before realising that each garment was in fact more or less the same size, and this is an example, I think, of faulty, or seconds merchandise being sold off as cheaply as possible, simply to get rid of it. Fine if youre built like a stick insect, but not much use to me, sadly.
I was quite struck at the changes made by the new owners, but one thing I find irritating is that each time Ive been there of late, albeit not that many times, a large number of shops have been relocated, with the result that after trekking round to a particular store, Ive found a notice in the window, telling me theyve moved. Theres usually a very helpful map next to the notice, but unfortunately the leaflet Id picked up at the entrance had already told me to come here. I understand the commercial need to match the store to the right premises, and realise that these things cant all be achieved at once, but nevertheless it is a little annoying, and I can only hope that theyll start to leave things as they are for a while once the current alterations are complete.
One of the changes I have been happy with is that nearly all the stores selling linens, cookware, glass and dinnerware etc have been relocated to the same area, on either side of the centre walkway. I find this very convenient if Im trying to compare items and prices, because I can flit back and forth to each shop, whereas before, Id have had to trudge from one end of the centre to the other to do so, so thats a huge plus as far as Im concerned. This part of the centre includes famous brands such as Wedgwood, Denby and Edinburgh Crystal, with a Christy Towels outlet being a recent addition. Some other shops worth a mention are the luggage stores, Samsonite and Antler, the latter being where we bought a stylish and durable set of suitcases for less than half price last year, and Bose, the hi-fi and home cinema dealers, where they have an in-built theatre for you to relax in and sample their sound systems.
Recently, we had the much feted arrival of Marks and Spencer, which doesnt exactly seem in keeping with the designer image, but nevertheless it caused a great deal of excitement locally, rumours having been in abundance for about two years or more. Ive been inside twice so far, each time wondering why Ive bothered they must have been storing this lot for years and forgotten where theyd left it it was the dowdiest and frumpiest range of womenswear you could imagine, and something not even Miss Marple would have been seen in. There was a small range of discontinued toiletry items at reduced prices, but otherwise nothing to write home about. I havent given up totally, however, and I will pluck up the courage to pay another visit sometime.
I like the design of the centre the buildings arent identical, with some being set back slightly from the rest, and others having verandah style decking outside, and while some people might think it a little twee, the place does have the look of a village about it. There are some pleasant plant arrangements dotted around, and in the summer it can be quite pleasant to sit outside one of the cafes and people-watch, while taking in a bit of sun. Its not quite so nice in the winter, however, being built on what must be one of Essexs few hills, by which I mean a small mound of earth, but being very unsheltered, its pretty much open to the elements, and its not uncommon for one of the ornamental street lamps to quiver in the wind, or a tile or two to blow down from a roof.
Speaking of cafes, there are three to choose from here, Starbucks, Coffee Republic and Thorntons, each having seating areas both inside and outside. You can buy the usual hot and cold beverages, together with sandwiches, panini, and terribly fattening, but delicious pastries in all three, and the prices dont vary a great deal. If youre just having tea or coffee, theyre all very similar, but if its food you want, Id be inclined to plump for Starbucks. Theres not much difference in the quality of the food itself, but Starbucks do seem to be better organised in this department, with the other two having a tendency to go to pieces when it comes to combining drinks and food orders youre likely to end up with somebody elses latte with your toasted sandwich, or vice-versa.
The alternative eating place inside the shopping centre is Burger King, which Ill not insult you by describing, and thankfully, the only other restaurant, which carried the slogan A Taste of England, and which must have been where Jacques Chirac dined before making his delightful remarks about British cuisine, has now closed to make way for a Next factory outlet. It means that Freeport has one less eatery, but I for one, can live with that, and also without the risk of food poisoning. For a more substantial meal theres Pizza Express on one side of the entrance to the shopping village, with an American/Italian style restaurant, Tutti Tuscan Grille (sic) on the other, which although not bad, is quite expensive, and is about as Italian as a tin of spaghetti. Alternatively, there are a number of quite decent restaurants located near the Freeport car park, which is just a couple of minutes walk away, and where its not necessary to book, notably Aroma (Chinese), Prezzo (Italian), Chimichangas (Mexican), and Chicago Rock Café (American). Id recommend the first three for good food, attentive service and pleasant surroundings.
Its relatively easy to get to Freeport its about 20 minutes drive from Stansted on the newly constructed A120, and it has its own railway station, or rather platform, on the London, Liverpool Street line, although trains are infrequent, running about every hour. For those living locally, there is a free bus service from Braintree town centre, running every 15 minutes, and the service is usually very reliable, although, except for school holidays, they use minibuses only, which get packed very quickly. The journey takes about five minutes or so.
Theres a fairly big parking area, which is free, and which is just across the road from the shops, and its only at weekends and busy periods, such as Christmas, when it gets a little difficult to find a space. It isnt helped by the fact that it also serves the nearby cinema and bowling alley, as well as the shopping village, but after speaking to the Freeport management some time ago, I understand that parking facilities were laid down at the outset by the Council, rather than Freeport itself, so they cant be blamed for any inadequacies in that area
I quite enjoy the odd trip to Freeport, and undoubtedly, there are plenty of bargains to be had, provided, as Ive said, youre in the right place at the right time. Its not a place Id like to visit too frequently, even if I had the money to do so, but its nice to go there for a leisurely day out, and perhaps treat yourself to a nice meal in the process a good bit of retail therapy.
Oh yes they can!! I will tell you why.... I am lucky to have a major, out of town, shopping village built right behind my home.... WHAT!! I hear you cry, lucky to have it behind your home?? I know most people would hate the thought of such a huge development right behind their house... what with all the extra traffic, the noise and the lighting, on day and night, but it is not all bad. I guess I am not a NIMBY (not in my back yard) but a YIMBY (yes in my back yard) This village is the Braintree Freeport Designer Village.... >>Braintree is mid-north Essex. Both Freeport, and Braintree, are found alongside the A120.. About 16 miles from Stansted Airport and lays betwen Colchester and Chelmsford<< It is advertised on the telly, in papers, mags and so on and attracts several thousand visitors a day to it. There are around 100 separate shops in it, play areas and a cyber cafe/pub, several restaurants and a dinner too. Oh and not to forget the Burger King...There are also street entertainers and bands playing on the week-ends too, it’s a place for a fun day out just as much as a shopping village. Yet it has a minimal affect on our daily lives, indeed we now wear very little other than designer labled gear... and I am disabled, married with three kids to feed and clothe, on a fixed income, and not a massive one at that. There are many such places dotted all over the country so take the time to go visit one… you will be glad you did. I should add that along with the shopping village cam a train station, link road and car parks, wonderfully planted garden areas and a new leisure complex, currently under construction. The complex will have a multi screen cinema, bowling alley and pubs/clubs too.. and still it has little effect on our lives. You see there are times when you can have things in your back yard and not really be affected. This development has bought jobs, shops, leisure and pleasure to the town, it has
also allowed us mere mortals to benefit from designer clothing. I should add, because many say designer gear is all about a label, you do get what you pay for. There is no question that a Tesco shirt is not as good as, nor will it last as long as, one made by a well known designer. Now to the cost of such things.... Well it is very varied, as are most types/styles and makes but, to give you some idea, I can tell you that we guys all wear Donnay Polo Shirts. They are top quality, hard wearing and wash over and over with no change, (boy I am starting to sound like my misses now..lol) how much do we pay for them??? £5.00 -- YES I did say five pound.... That is not a one off price, they have been open for about 18 months and the prices have remained this low. My wife wears all manner of labels, my favourites are the Roman Originals she gets, they have that special extra finish?? Again, as an idea, I can point to one jacket she bought there, it is a nice black, tailored jacket, embroidered with a gold leaf type pattern to the lower part and would normally cost you £85.. if you were looking to buy it in a standard shop... I paid just £8 for it... it is a wonderful jacket, everyone that ever sees her in it comments on the style and beauty of it and yet we sit there knowing we paid so little. In fact I would say you would be very hard pressed to find any clothing on the high street, no matter the make, for the same price. We may not be a 2 car, high roller celebrity but we can dress and feel like one. As I say, on top of this there are all the extras and now, being built, there is a brand new, massive, indoor swimming pool too. All you need to do is look and you too can wear designer labelled clothing at a price that will not shock either your bank manager or your husband/wife.
Shopping for a bra should or could be a pleasurable experience, well shouldn't it. WELL IT WASN'T. Why is it when you knowwhat size you need, what colour you want and the shop is full of bras, in all colours all designs, all shapes and prices so cheap you can afford a dozen, that they don't have your size. Having decided to replenish my underwear stock, which is something that I don't do that regularly, now I know why. We took a visit to our local out of town retail outlet "Freeport" in Braintree. Seeing sale signs beckoning in the Gossard shop and leaving my husband outside for fear of embarrassment (his, not mine I hasten to add). I entered, bad move. Now being a size 10, at the bottom and a size 14 at the top, buying clothes is difficult enough. But buying a bra is almost impossible. Beautiful bras, lovely colours, lacy, see through, big ones, small ones, £2.50 up to £49.50, but none to fit me. Well thats a lie actually, a grotty brown one and a see through pink "balcony bra", lean over and they fall out, not my idea of comfort. 20 minutes later I re-emerge braless (except for the one I went in wearing, of course). Why haven't you brought anything says husband, none in my size I say, frowns and gritted teeth. We (yes we) enter the Warners shop, hundreds of bras says husband, what about these (tiny little see through golf ball holders - too small I say). Over to the other side of the shop to hammocks - what about these he says, too big I say. 15 minutes and numerous grunts and groans (husband not me) later, we emerge from the shop with 2 bras - no matching knickers and although they are supposedly my size do they fit - do they hell. Men have it easy don't they boxer shorts, where your belly sist on the top and nothing to hold your tits up or in. I'm coming back as a man next time. Happy sale shopping.
Freeport Braintree Designer Outlet Village has over 80 shops offering leading brands such as Calvin Klein, DKNY and Elle at up to 50% off high street prices.