Shop vacancy rates have remained stable for the sixth month in a row.
According to the latest Local Data Company (LDC) shop vacancy barometer, 14.1% of UK stores were empty during July of this year. The vacancy rate has been at this level since February.
Matthew Hopkinson, director at the LDC said although the stability was positive, diversity in high street shops was decreasing.
“This is the sixth consecutive month that the national shop vacancy rate has held at 14.1%,” he said. “This is good news in stable vacant shop numbers, albeit that there are 45,637 vacant shops across the country, but underlying this is significant churn, openings and closures of businesses, which are changing the face of our town centres. Recent reports have highlighted the rise of charity shops and betting shops, which have been replacing clothes shops, computer shops and travel shops amongst others.”
Hopkinson added that some areas were suffering extremely high vacancy rates compared to others.
“The variance in the percentage of vacant shops in town centres is significant as they range from 0% to 37%.”