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Emptiness Is The Wonder Of Woolies

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Empty Woolworths Stores Proving A Hard Sell

More than eight in 10 former Woolworths in Scotland are still empty six months after the chain went bust.

Across the UK, 560 of the 807 ex-Woolies stores have still not been taken over.

And of those that have, most are now discount stores.

The research found that Bargain Madness have 31 stores, Home Bargains have eight, Poundland have 10 and 99p stores have 21.

Rob Alston, retail partner at property specialists Cushman & Wakefield, said the demise of Woolworths has compounded UK high street trading woes by seeing more than 800 prime retail locations become vacant at once: “Virtually every town in the country has been affected.

“The fact that only about 20% of the Woolworths stores have been sold by the administrators says a lot about current retail demand.â€

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Our ex-woolworths is now two shops. The bigger part calls itself "fashion direct", while the smaller part sells shoes.

Haven't been in, though I expect I'll check out the shoes sometime in the not-too-distant.

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Is the ex-Woolies in Aberdeen still available?

We have just received an enquiry from a Mr. Floperty McPhlippit, Aberdeen's most famous contrarian (virtual) investor.

Further details about this prime prospect HERE

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“The fact that only about 20% of the Woolworths stores have been sold by the administrators says a lot about current retail demand.â€

Hang on. I thought that Woollies didn't own the shops any more and had sold them off a few years back in a rent back scheme.

The administrators therefore don't need to sell the shops off, it is the owners that need to rent them out.

Am I wrong here?

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Hang on. I thought that Woollies didn't own the shops any more and had sold them off a few years back in a rent back scheme.

The administrators therefore don't need to sell the shops off, it is the owners that need to rent them out.

Am I wrong here?

No

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Hang on. I thought that Woollies didn't own the shops any more and had sold them off a few years back in a rent back scheme.

The administrators therefore don't need to sell the shops off, it is the owners that need to rent them out.

Am I wrong here?

The administrators try and sell the leases, and they managed to sell a few, otherwise they revert back to the landlord who tries to find a new tenant.

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They are cursed. The shop has been selling shit for so long (when stock could be got onto the shelves anyway) that the place has become a kind of retail "dead zone" where nothing will sell, not even the building.

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The administrators try and sell the leases, and they managed to sell a few, otherwise they revert back to the landlord who tries to find a new tenant.

Interesting.

Not very familiar with this area, so forgive my naivety.

Do they keep paying the rent then?

And do they have to sell the leases on with the same rent being charged?

Just curious really, not trying to buy the one in East Molesey or Surbiton or Kingston or Walton (all of which are empty).

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Interesting.

Not very familiar with this area, so forgive my naivety.

Do they keep paying the rent then?

And do they have to sell the leases on with the same rent being charged?

Just curious really, not trying to buy the one in East Molesey or Surbiton or Kingston or Walton (all of which are empty).

The administrators can keep hold on them if they think the leases are of value ie can be sold on at a premium. Whilst they do this they would be liable for rent and rates. This only usually occurs on very prime shops and in a much stronger market than the current one.

Edit to add: In cases where the administrators do sell leases to realise value for creditors the lease will simply be assigned to the new retailer at the current rent and the ingoing retailer will pay a lump sum (premium) to the administrators to secure the lease. In some cases the LL may think they could get more rent on a new lease and may themselves pay a premium to the administrators.

Most of the sought after Woolies leases were offloaded at premiums prior to administration to prop up the collapsing business. Not much left by the end and most will have been handed back to the LLs asap.

Edited by Soon Not a Chain Retailer

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So the landlords can't lease them to anyone else at the same high prices that Woolies was paying? So what. If they won't lower the rent, they sit empty.

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So the landlords can't lease them to anyone else at the same high prices that Woolies was paying? So what. If they won't lower the rent, they sit empty.

They will lower the rent, to established retailers most could be secured on 2 years rent free. I bet I could find some where they'd cough up for a proportion of the business rates as well

Still no takers, yes it's that bad. :o

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So the landlords can't lease them to anyone else at the same high prices that Woolies was paying? So what. If they won't lower the rent, they sit empty.

The consumer society is dead. We need to find other uses for these "spaces that flow well". I suggest turning them into homes for single mothers who don't work. Handy for the shops.

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Witney branch is now a '99p' shop. Every time I walk past I see the dregs of the town in there getting excited at all the 'bargains'. I bet David Cameron is really proud.

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Witney branch is now a '99p' shop. Every time I walk past I see the dregs of the town in there getting excited at all the 'bargains'. I bet David Cameron is really proud.

Gone upmarket since Woolies closed has it?

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The old Woolworths in Solihull (nr Birmingham) is now a New Look - last time we shopped there it was busy

That in Enfield Highway is now a Turkish supermarket (part of a successful and growing chain) - those I have seen in more "upmarket" locations (eg Colchester/Loughton/Whitby) remain empty, although the same can be said for Redcar (which seems to be suffering more than even in the blighted 80s) so I don't know if one can discern a trend there.

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The local Woolies is still empty.

That could well be because there is already a Poundshop, a Savers and three charity shops. There were four charity shops, but obviously that was more tat than the market could stand.

Interesting: there are now 6 hairdressers in the High Street vicinity, the only other trade that appears to function. But this too has reached saturation point.

Angry at all the 'me-too' competition, the traders are complaining that Council Planners should regulate diversity in the High Street.

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Hounslow High Street Woolies is a larger than average store (approx 30,000sqft) and looks like being empty for a long time.

Being Hounslow we already have a Poundland, 99p stores and various independent 89p stores. Opposite Woolies is a TK Maxx and further down a very big Primark so I can't see many retailers taking it up, maybe it would suit Matalan or similar.

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Our local one is now a brothel set out in the old wild west style, the pic'n'mix has carried on but in

a different form ;-)

Then I woke up and realised it is still another empty white washed windowed crap old shop.

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