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"High street crisis deepens: 1 in 12 shops closed in five years"

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Courtesy of the Guardian, with some interesting graphics breaking down the decline by shop type and location.

Quote

English and Welsh town centres have lost 8% of their shops on average since 2013, according to a Guardian analysis, with some major destinations such as Stoke and Blackpool shuttering two out of 10 town centre sites over the past five years.

The average toll equates to at least 40 shops closing per town centre in England and Wales, in a stark illustration of the economic conditions faced by retailers and local communities.

Pretty serious numbers anyway, before you take into account that the trend has probably worsened significantly in the past couple of years..

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7 minutes ago, Tes Tickle said:

Quick, invest in commericial property - just like all the local councils are doing with £millions of borrowed money.

:)

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It's interesting; of they do f00k up local council finances by stupid leveraged investments, doesn't that mean taxes have to rise, further depressing the amount of money available to prop house prices up? Economics really is a doozy.

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Is this actually a bad thing though?

We all know much more is being bought online, so it stands to reason that physical shop numbers will decline.

You could chart terminal decline charts from the past of blacksmiths shops, or black-and-white TV manufacturing as well, that would show the same alarming collapses - but equally are just indicative of shifts in consumption.

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3 minutes ago, scottbeard said:

Is this actually a bad thing though?

We all know much more is being bought online, so it stands to reason that physical shop numbers will decline.

You could chart terminal decline charts from the past of blacksmiths shops, or black-and-white TV manufacturing as well, that would show the same alarming collapses - but equally are just indicative of shifts in consumption.

It's a pretty good thing. High street rent has been absolutely killing the brick and mortar sector. It has been increasingly more so that only the big players that have been able to actually afford the high street rents - making the high street less local and dominated by the same few brands. Councils have responded to this quite well, at least in the town I live, by encouraging the growth of local markets (pop-up stalls) which are thriving. One positive that can be taken away by councils buying up ex-commercial property could be that it indicates an interest in re-purposing the high street from a reliance on mass market brands to a focus on the smaller, local trader.

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surely there is one council out there that is willing to take a chance, removing patking charges, leasing its industrial and commercial units at guy on the street start up prices not the stupid prices that stifles anyone but the big boys. dropping rates right down. opening up a market in the centre. i bet they would do really well, the increase in buisness and jobs would bring money in from other ways. 

 

instead they just want to squeeze the populance as far as they can and then a little bit more and when it all crashes around them blame the central government or a recession. 

 

 

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3 hours ago, aheadofthecurve said:

One positive that can be taken away by councils buying up ex-commercial property could be that it indicates an interest in re-purposing the high street from a reliance on mass market brands to a focus on the smaller, local trader.

You've misunderstood what councils are doing.  They're not investing in shopping centres in their own back yard to improve the area they are responsible for, but are lobbing money at any old property anywhere in the country, just as a get-rich-quick scheme, using the cheap borrowed money they've recently been allowed to play with.

E.g...

https://www.portsmouth.gov.uk/ext/your-council/policies-and-strategies/property-investment-strategy

So far the council has spent just over £108m on the following purchases:

  • A Schlumberger industrial unit, in Gloucestershire (£8m)
  • A Waitrose supermarket, in Somerset (£13.2m)
  • A Matalan retail unit, in Swindon (£9.7m)
  • A DHL warehouse, in Warwickshire (£12.4m)
  • A Mercedes Benz showroom, in Eastleigh (£8.75m)
  • An estate of trade units, in Leeds (£13.75m)
  • A Travis Perkins warehouse, in Leicestershire (£15.7m)
  • Lidl and Dunelm retail units, in Worcestershire (£8.3m)
  • A Sharps Bedrooms factory, in the West Midlands (£11.5m)
  • A UPS warehouse, in Yorkshire (£7.25m)
  • Portsmouth Retail Park, Southampton Road (£16m)

Basically, future taxation will pay the interest on the loans and public services will be paid for from the rent received.

What could possibly go wrong?

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Everything. You know when government gets involved in any kind of service or business it will loose money. Especially if it is Labour or Lib Dem run. I would guess this was a Lib Dem idea on Portsmouth Council, if not the Tories are turning socialist

Edited by bear.getting.old

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Quote

The owner of the Lakeside and Trafford Centre shopping centres, Intu, has cut its forecast for rental income, blaming the retail downturn.

Intu said 2019 would be "challenging" due to a rise in rescue deals, as stores struggle to pay rent.

It added that retailers were also delaying signing new leases due to "political and retail" uncertainty.

Intu said its like-for-like rental income for the year would fall by between 4-6%.

In February, the company had said it expected rental income to drop by 1-2%.

https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-48145556

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Are they really trying to say that they didn't see any of this coming (or that they don't see what more is inevitably coming in the future)?

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I believe Portsmouth council has been run by Tories since 2015. But some of those ‘investments’ may have been made prior to 2015 at which time liberals were the the largest group.

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      • down 5% +
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