DIY retail space declines
Published:  07 April, 2010

HIGH WYCOMBE: The total floor space occupied by retailers increased marginally by 0.4% in 2009 but DIY retail space declined according to a recent audit.

Trevor Wood Associates' annual audit of UK retail and leisure parks showed that:

  • B&Q, the largest occupier of space in retail parks, decreased its total space by 6% in 2009. It was one of only two retailers in the top 10 to downsize over the year. The other was PC World, which decreased its floor space by 2%.
  • The collapse of retailers such as Woolworths, Land of Leather, Borders and MFI in recent years has led 20 retailers to disappear from the top 50 since 2002.
  • The main loser last year in terms of its presence in retail parks was the DIY chain Focus that dropped 26% of its floor space. Winners included Argos, up 14%, Next, up 8pc, Pets at Home, up 14%, and furnishing group Dunelm, up 28%.

Trevor Wood, at the consultancy, said: "By looking at the share of total retail park floor space over the past eight years we can see the declining importance of the leading retail park tenants and the emergence of a growing number of new entrants to the retail warehouse market."

A fifth of retailers paying top rate rents of more than £100 per sq ft are either in administration or subject to company voluntary arrangements, according to the research.

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