Disappointment for Sheffield shoppers as another shop closes down on Fargate

Next has officially closed its doors on Fargate after opening its new Sheffield store on The Moor.

By Dan Windham
Thursday, 4th July 2019, 3:42 pm
Updated Thursday, 4th July 2019, 3:43 pm
Empty shops on Fargate.
Empty shops on Fargate.

The fashion retailer opened its new Sheffield city centre store on Tuesday as the ongoing transformation of The Moor continues.

Next has now closed its Fargate store and H&M will soon follow as it moves to The Moor later this year.

Empty shops on Fargate.

Sheffield city centre has lost 18 per cent of its shops in five years but a consultation is in place on plans to bring a ‘new identity’ to the street.

This will include improved public spaces, living accommodation, seated areas as well as restaurants, bars and cafés.

Sheffield Council is proposing to consult with owners and occupiers of buildings on Fargate and surrounding streets and, together with Sheffield Business Improvement District (BID), would look to gain funding to redesign shop front and change planning guidance, where relevant.

The changes would also pave the way for more buildings to be used as restaurants with specific outdoor seating areas and encourage the use of the units’ upper floors to add residential, commercial, community and heath-based facilities to the Fargate offering.

Next on Fargate

The announcement comes after stakeholders said they thought Fargate had been ‘overlooked’, ‘felt unsafe’ and looked ‘shabby’ in a survey.

Coun Mazher Iqbal, cabinet member for business and investment at Sheffield Council, said: “We are committed to giving Fargate a new sense of purpose as the gateway to our excellent and transformative Heart Of The City II scheme.

Fargate, Sheffield.

“We want Fargate to be a force to be reckoned with. You can’t hide from the fact that Fargate is changing, and, that it faces challenges. But by uniting behind this draft vision we can see the green shoots of recovery on this historic street.

“It is so important that we have signed up to this joint commitment to improving the street. We are one city centre, and it’s crucial that, as the Moor and Heart Of The City develop new identities, that Fargate can do the same.

“We also want people across the city to have their say about how Fargate develops so we can create a street that works for us all.”

The report said that in the survey of stakeholders, Fargate was ‘universally seen as in a poor state of health’ but it added it had also been dealt a ‘tough hand’ by issues such as overrunning construction works, multiple ownership of buildings and 'scrappy street furniture’.

The draft vision is set to be endorsed by cabinet in the summer following a period of public consultation.