Sheffield among top declining high streets in the UK due to Covid-19, new study reveals

With the UK high street set to change drastically due Covid-19 induced store closures, new research has revealed that Sheffield could be among those towns and cities to be hit the hardest.

Wednesday, 3rd June 2020, 8:44 pm
Updated Friday, 5th June 2020, 5:00 pm

Due to the current measures in place because of Covid-19, the nation's high streets are predominately closed aside from essential shops – closures which have had a direct impact on businesses bringing about indefinite nationwide closures for some alongside complete administration for others.

Using this information, the eCommerce company Ask Traders has conducted a study by using the closure of iconic brands including Debenhams, Cath Kidston, and Oasis, to help predict which of the nation's high streets will be hit the hardest and which are least at risk.

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Fargate in Sheffield city centre has been relatively empty as people follow lockdown and social distancing advice

The cities with the most amount of closures were then deemed the most at risk.

Sheffield ranked sixth of the top 20 ‘at risk’ high streets in the UK with 22 store closures, falling shortly behind Edinburgh with 25 closures and Leeds which had 34.

London has seen the most store closures with over 128 stores closing their doors, while Manchester came second with over 54 store closures.

The data also revealed which 20 high-street towns and cities are least at risk of collapse due to Covid-19.

The Moor in Sheffield has been quieter than normal due to Covid-19 induced closures

Bedford, Chester and Guildford, will see the least impact, alongside 11 other towns with only 1 store closing.

Doncaster and Chesterfield have each seen four store closures.

Researchers say the study is a promising sign for some towns in the UK who won't be shattered by the current pandemic.

Nigel Frith, senior market analyst at Ask Traders, said: “This pandemic has seen household names such as Debenhams and Cath Kidston close. Both of these are long-standing members of the high-street.

“It's evident that COVID-19 hasn't stopped for any retail name, with more obvious financial hits than others. It's also surprising that these brand names haven't fallen into any trouble sooner.

“Looking forward, more high street brands will probably fail over the coming days, weeks and even months after COVID-19. What were once-popular high street names offering classic and seasonal pieces might have to join Debenhams and Laura Ashley. Question is, who's next?”

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