The Crisis in UK Shopping Centres



Following on from my article The Future of The High Street, do shopping centres have the same issues?

In many towns and cities in the UK, shopping centres are the central hub of the shopping district.

In recent years we have seen many of these purchased by venture capitalists who often have a short-term approach. As a result of major anchor stores such as Woolworths, BHS etc failing, many of these shopping centres have vacant units, vaping retailers, charity shops and nail bars. This does not make for the greatest shopping experience and footfall is reducing.

The owners are therefore very much at a cross roads. They generally have neither the appetite or expertise to inject capital for a transformation programme and are therefore likely to be focussing on an exit strategy of either closing the centre or selling.

Closing down these shopping centres would be catastrophic for smaller towns and cities and local councils would most likely be keen to work with new owners and investors to secure their future.

Herein lies an opportunity for the savvy investor to get a great deal. Then by transforming the shopping centre into an experience by introducing more hospitality, sea life centres, crazy golf and other activities, underpinned by other services such as GP surgeries, these centres can be the heart of the community.

So whilst the underlying issues are different from the high street, the solution is similar and those successful investors who see this opportunity could be very successful and generate additional opportunities for investment on the nearby high street that would also benefit from the increased footfall.

To read more articles on the property sector from Nick Symes, Director of Property, please visit:

Tags: economy | retail | venturecapital | regeneration | hospitality | propertyinvestors | highstreet