Shop Closures - Images from West Ealing
What's the future for local high streets?
Recent figures indicate the rate of high street shops closing down is easing - whilst this is good news it's not much help to neighbourhoods left with vacant and boarded up stores.
According to research firm The Local Data Company the number of empty stores in the UK rose to 12 per cent at the end of last year - from 10 per cent in the first half of 2009. This compares to a rise from 5 per cent to 10 per cent in the first six months of the year.
Stephen Robertson, director general of the British Retail Consortium, says: ‘It's good to see closure rates now slowing in some towns, though a lot of our high streets are in a bad way after the recession.
Local photographer Quoc-Huy Nguyen Dinh has sent Ealingtoday.co.uk images of around 20 shops that have closed along the Uxbridge Road in West Ealing.
David Highton from West Ealing Neighbours says they have been talking to the Council about making use of the windows of these empty shops. WEN has proposed various ideas to use them as galleries for showing historic photos of West Ealing and for the work of local artists. Recently, the Council has contracted a company to try to make this happen in West Ealing.
A case of watch this space...
What do you think can be done about empty shops? Discuss on the forum
April 14th, 2010