Gosh, my word!

According to the British Retail Consortium (BRC), 11.2 per cent of all shops on high streets and in shopping centres are vacant.

Isn\’t that a surprising statistic?

Based on ONS experimental Internet sales series, the non-seasonally adjusted average weekly
value of Internet retail sales in July 2011 was £523.4 million which was approximately 9.1 per
cent of total retail sales (excluding automotive fuel), compared with July 2010 which was £395.8
million which was approximately 7.1 per cent of total retail sales (excluding automotive fuel).

Hmm, perhaps not so surprising.

6 thoughts on “Gosh, my word!”

  1. There are too many shops in the UK, especially in unappealing secondary locations. Many of them will never be brought back into use as shops, and it would be better to encourage conversion to housing.

  2. I agree with Curmudgeon.
    OK there is a recession, but there are also 2 long-term trends- the internet and the increased cost of travel. This will reduce the number of town centre shops. So, 11% of high street shops – maybe 30,000 shops (wild guess)? Assume half are unsuitable for housing but we can get 2 townhouses or flats per shop. So that’s 30,000 new homes without any greenfield development. And more people living in town centres which is probably a good thing.

  3. In April I visited Oz for the first time in 4 years.

    Driving down the typical high street in Sydney, I can’t recall seeing anything which competes with the internet apart from real estate agencies.

    Pretty much all services for which you must show up in person – eating, drinking, hair & beauty, yoga type stuff, kids activities etc.

    But the high street did not look empty.

  4. It doesn’t help when local authorities wage war on motorists, either.

    If you can’t easily get to the shops and park somewhere nearby for not too much money, you just aren’t going to bother.

  5. Agree with all of the above: they contribute, in varying degrees, to the situation. Nonetheless, it does detract from the general amenity of town centres, especially for people like me, who don’t drive. Not saying there’s anything to be done; not saying there’s anything should be done, but it does change the character of a place when one in ten of the places you knew as a kid are boarded-up, and half the rest are ersatz charity shops. I no longer live in the UK, so I don’t get the chance to acclimatise to the deterioration of the retail shopping environment. It’s jolting, every time I visit.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *