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The demise of a traditional high street..

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ProfilePosted byOptionsPost Date


supercrutch Report 14 Jan 2013 22:34

I guess I am one of those responsible :-(

Obviously I cannot mooch around shops so do 90% of mine online. With the latest batch of established retailers closing what will our high streets look like in 5 years?

15 years ago you could drop me in any high street and they all seemed to be cloned by the same planning officer.

Old family shops disappeared first, charity shops multiplied. Chains of shops then started to shut and greeting card shops sprung up, too many of them to attract enough business.

The reduction in business rates ended and increased turnover was essential but with almost every out of town development being approved they should no chance.

What are we and our children facing? Unless I live in Cowbridge where money keeps expensive independent family shops trading I think it's bleak.

Any thoughts?



Nyx Report 14 Jan 2013 22:36

yes I have a's "thank God for the distraction of this thread" LOL.


AnnCardiff Report 14 Jan 2013 22:40

that's why I love Abergavenny - and Monmouth!!!


Susan10146857 Report 14 Jan 2013 22:42

One by one the shops where I live are being converted into houses, so no chance of them ever reopening in the future.


AnninGlos Report 14 Jan 2013 22:44

It will probably be streets full of pound shops and charity shops, even more so than now. I am amazed that Gloucester is still investing money into building new centre and new shops. Who is going to fill them? I think it is sad to see these shops going down. I do shop on line but also like to browse and buy in store.


Eeyore13 Report 14 Jan 2013 22:47

Live in a "tourist" town with one main supermarket so no competition thus expensive. Just easier to shop on-line here.

Nearest retail park has two empty units & I don't like the feeling I'll get trampled to death.

I think the majority of children won't know what a corner shop is unless they go to a living museum.

Sad days :-(


JustJohn Report 14 Jan 2013 22:56

I remember Evesham being a lovely little town. Then suddenly there were 4 supermarkets.

Thinking of liitle towns like Cowbridge, Faringdon (Oxon), Hay on Wye, Treorchy. They are all at least 3 miles from a major supermarket of out of town shopping centre. They also have a cache, they are nice places to meet friends - Treorchy is a bit like that still, in its own way.

The towns I knew as I was growing up are nothing today and they were thriving in old days - Bilston, Flint, Pontypridd, Colwyn Bay, Whitchurch (Salop). Yes, the internet has had an effect - but still only a small percentage of a massively increased retail spend.


JustGinnie Report 14 Jan 2013 23:12

Well around this area we have betting shops, pound shops and charity shops. The few small shops we have sell more booze than grocery.
I am not one of the many who drive to out of town shopping centres but I do shop on line for things more now. I still like to go and get my own grocery though but have a bus journey or two to be able to do that.


jax Report 14 Jan 2013 23:18

My OH works for a well known high street store doing next day deliveries...not to homes but to the stores. They still do home deliveries but getting customers in the stores may then attract more business.
I know I would spend more money if I went out to do my food shopping than if I bought online.

I love being able to buy things online, the only problem is getting to the door before they have turned around and gone. I ordered some cheap furry boots the other day and was hoping they would turn up whilst he was home....they did but they just left them on the doorstep without even knocking :-S


JustJohn Report 14 Jan 2013 23:21

I feel a bit sorry for the older ones who like to go to nearest town centre on the bus. Now shops in towns are often more expensive because rates are exorbitant.

Most people now don't like buses and drive. So it is much easier to go to a large superstore and fill up with petrol than get wet and run in and out of several shops in a town centre.

I just wonder what would happen if there was a petrol protest again and nobody could buy petrol in a superstore or even drive to one.

And what if we had a millennium type bug and we could no longer buy stuff on line. We would return to town centres and find them boarded up or full of cash converters, money supermarkets, charity shops and estate agents :-(

Town planners need to have more joined-up thinking.


Kay???? Report 14 Jan 2013 23:22

All in superstores what sells almost everything is the future,,,,,,,places like Asda will rule all retail.

Family run are just about a thing of the past and high street shops are just floored by rates and taxes,vat,insurances etc and all manner of other stuffs.....


supercrutch Report 14 Jan 2013 23:43

Jax have the same problem, I have a note which I stick on front door which asks delivery person to give me time to open the door ;-)

In our little town pop 4000, Greggs have just opened. We had 4 very small independent bakers and sandwich/baguette shops which were popular for lunches. They will be struggling now, there are not enough shoppers to go around :-(

It looks so poor when you drive through but there is plenty of money in the area but all spent in the large edge of town store. That store was the most profitable branch in the UK! Yes it's Tesco! Sainsburys applied for a store at the opposite end of town and guess who managed to block the approval?

I don't think my grandchildren will enjoy a shopping experience unless they visit cities.


AnnCardiff Report 14 Jan 2013 23:52

Tesco are taking over the world!!!!


JustJohn Report 14 Jan 2013 23:54

We have several immobile people round here who still leave front door open and shout to come in. Not quite as dangerous as it sounds, as they usually have relatives in street who keep an eye open.

It must be a big problem, though, I am quite fit, yet often can't get to door in time and see van driving down hill. And if you leave notices pinned to the door, is that an open invitation.

Anyway, I could write a book about Tesco and planning, but think it might affect my little Tesco pension :-D I will just say that there are wealthy people in councils and leave it there. One thing Tesco were always better than opposition was forecasting sales. They had a brilliant computer model till I left in 1990 that was always incredibly close to what they would sell per department in a new store. And they knew which stores would subsequently close around that new location


maggiewinchester Report 15 Jan 2013 00:03

I think I must be weird.
I work 37 hours a week, and don't drive. I usually get my shopping from a supermarket in town on my way home. There are buses to the local 'out of town' Tesco's - but they stop at 2.30 - so no good to me.
I don't shop online as I'm not in during the day.
I ususally do 'other than supermarket' shopping locally, on a Friday as I can leave work at 4pm. I like to try on what I'm buying - is that strange?
I keep local stores going!!

Unfortunately, they're dying day by day.


supercrutch Report 15 Jan 2013 00:07

Yep, it's an open invitation to be met at the door by me wielding a deadly crutch :-D


Bobtanian Report 15 Jan 2013 00:27

me also, ive never been the one to buy records, just to have the latest hit........
only did clothes/shoes shopping when it was necessary.....rather than fashion.......
used local shops untill the parking was better at a supermarket...........I put a lot of blame on the arrogant councils' war on parking....they have done a fair bit of harm to high street shopping,

so mea culpa........


*$parkling $andie*

*$parkling $andie* Report 15 Jan 2013 00:34

My last 'big purchases' lol have been in my nearest town, in the same shop , family run which has been there since I was a child. They've always sold branded named shoes( Clarkes plus others ) and have diversified into quality sports and outdoor clothing...They had snow shovels there today!

I've bought new weatherproof coat , Barbour style., 2 pair of shoes (in their sale) flat loafer , other a trouser shoe {bit more stylish ;-)} and a handbag.
Not all one the same day.. I spread it out ,so hubby doesn't see it all at once on the credit card ;-)

That shop is doing well. cos otherwise the town is full of hairdressers, estate agents, bridal shops ( ??),charity shops. newsagents ,2 jewellers a butchers and not much else.

No supermarket as such, Asda is just on the outskirts of town(walking distance)

Oh yeah AnnC , Abergavenny is a thriving town ,I love it too:)

Personally I like to buy locally ,the other town..Opposite direction ,has more selection of shops .one very good Furniture shop (family run) which we usually buy our carpets from,

I guess we are all guilty of shopping out of town for convienience sake and buying on the internet..which can be a hell of a lot cheaper !

Purple **^*Sparkly*^** Diamond

Purple **^*Sparkly*^** Diamond Report 15 Jan 2013 07:13

We have two large shopping malls built over the last 22 years, mainly known stores. I haven't been to the Castle Mall lately so no idea if there are many empty shops in there, but the HMV store is at the entrance, if my memory serves me right.

Chapelfield Mall is built on the site of the old Caleys/Mackintosh/Nestle chocolate factory and is easier for me to access, hope there won't be too many more shops closing down to make that place fail. It's close to our main shopping street with M & S, Bhs, W.H. Smiths, and Iceland, as well as a QD store which is now being refurbished. Apparently QD are opening even more stores so they are certainly doing ok. Started out as a local venture and spreading each year, they sell all sorts of things very reasonably. We also have a Wilkinsons further up the street from QD where our old Co-op store was. I miss that one, having shopped there since I was a child, the clothes were great, such a wide variety of all styles and prices.

I suppose Norwich is lucky that so many people stiil shop here.



JustJohn Report 15 Jan 2013 09:46

I think another factor of the demise of town centre (exorbitant rates and difficult parking certainly are real problems) is the strange hours that we work.

A couple want to shop together, but we have to get our diaries out now to find 2 hours when we can shop. Otherwise it tends to be solo shopping at end of shift or before work. And you want the safe and easy and free parking offered by out of town.

I think that may be why Sunday has become the busiest shopping day - it is often the only day that families can do things together.