Shop vacancy spreads across the country

In Industry News On

Nearly 12% of shops in Britain’s high streets now stand empty. These dire statistics, which deteriorated from just over 4% in the middle of 2008, illustrate the malaise spreading across the country and affecting all levels of retail from the largest regional centres to the smallest high streets.

Amongst the main areas, worst hit are the big regional centres in the North and Midlands, with Derby, Liverpool and Leeds all seeing over 20% of their retail capacity vacant. The South fares slightly better with Croydon and Exeter the only representatives in the top ten with just over and just under 15% vacancy respectively. Central London sees a vacancy rate of nearly 13%. Generally, smaller centres appear to be doing slightly better than larger ones overall.

These are the findings of the Local Data Company survey carried out across over 700 town centres. The survey also examined the impact of Woolworths’ demise which created in excess of 800 vacant prime retail units, affecting virtually every town centre in the country. “The fact that only about 20% of the Woolworths have been sold says a lot about current retail demand and, while a substantial number of other units have been let by landlords, this has left a huge hole in many town centres across the country.”

Some of Woolworths’ empty stores have been acquired by Iceland which took approximately 50 sites, with the likes of Bargain Madness, 99p Stores, Heron Frozen Foods, Poundland, Home Bargains and Carpet Right acquiring many of the remaining stores.

The British Property Federation (BPF), which backed the report, calls for the scrapping of empty property rates (EPR) as well as a re-think on changing the planning use of buildings to enable empty shops to be more efficiently used for non-retail pursuits.

You may also read!

Whirlpool UK Appliances expands global STEM tournament to Bristol primary schools

Whirlpool UK Appliances, the home of Hotpoint, Indesit, Whirlpool and KitchenAid brands, is launching a new fully-funded Institution of

Read More...

Pre-orders open in Europe for Sony LED TV with cognitive intelligence

Sony said that pre-orders have started for its BRAVIA XR X90J Full Array LED TV, which it said delivers

Read More...

Customers urged to play their part for safe reopening

Thousands of retailers will be welcoming back customers from today as ‘non-essential’ retail begins to reopen. Retailers have spent hundreds

Read More...

Mobile Sliding Menu

©2020 Innovative Electrical Retailing. Datateam Business Media Limited. All rights reserved.
Registered in England No: 1771113. VAT No: 834 8567 90.
Registered Office: 15a London Road, Maidstone, Kent ME16 8LY
open