Saturday, 09 February 2019 19:40

How long can the high street survive?

We all know that the high street has been in a bit of a mess for some time, but realistically just how long can it survive?

The reason we are posing this question is because sales in high street stores slumped yet again in December -  the sixth year in a row that sales have bombed, meaning this year was the high street's worst year on record.

Despite many of Britain's favourite and most iconic stores offering last-minute savings before Christmas, people still didn't turn out in the numbers required to bolster the shops.

There was a brief respite going into the New Year as more people turned out for the end of season sales, but this figure was still lower than last year's numbers.

It doesn't take a rocket scientist to establish that the internet has played a massive part in the high street's demise, and figures from Christmas certainly suggest this to be the case. Last minute internet sales rose nearly 12 per cent on the same time the previous year. 

The internet cannot be entirely blamed for this sad demise, however. Dare we mention, Brexit? Yes, consumer confidence is low in every sector, and because people don't know what the exact impact Brexit will have on both a national and local level, people are refraining, wherever possible, from spending money unnecessarily. 

We for one certainly don't want to see the end of the high street, it's a crucial part of the British shopping culture, but unfortunately, we fear the worst.

We appreciate there's not much that can be done about the rise of the internet - it's convenient for people with busy lives, but local councils could undoubtedly do more to protect the heartbeat of their towns and cities by reducing excessive and insulting parking charges. Why on earth would people pay over £5 for less than 2 hours of shopping time when they could shop online at home for free? There's certainly a case to be answered from that point of view.

We've already lost stores like Toys R Us and Woolworths, and many more are certainly going to go the same way unless there is a significant shift within the next year.

1 comment

  • Comment Link samantha samantha

    It's not the internet that's at fault. It's society. Nobody wants to go into town to do their shopping feeling unsafe, but that is exactly how the majority of people feel these days walking into their local town. There's drug users and dodgy people everywhere. Shopping online from the comfort of your own home isnt going to kill you. Get the lowlifes off the streets, clean up the areas and i bet the high street thrives again. Just an idea.

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