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Bluewater gains top position in shopping centre survey

Bluewater shopping centre in Kent has regained the top position in the UK shopping centre hierarchy according to a recent survey of the UK's 500 leading shopping centres. MetroCentre, Gateshead took second place, followed by Westfield London at number three.

GENERAL MERCHANDISE

Bluewater gains top position in shopping centre survey

Bluewater shopping centre in Kent has regained the top position in the UK shopping centre hierarchy according to a recent survey of the UK's 500 leading shopping centres. MetroCentre, Gateshead took second place, followed by Westfield London at number three.

'Going Shopping 2011 - The Definitive Guide to Shopping Centres’, published by Trevor Wood Associates every three years, uses footfall, size, number and type of shops and facilities available to rank the UK’s top 500 shopping centres. It also provides research on factory outlet centres, shopping parks, shopping & leisure centres, tenants, owners, letting agents and managers.  

Trevor Wood, senior partner of Trevor Wood Associates, said: “It is encouraging that despite prevailing market conditions, most of the 500 leading schemes increased their scores, even if only marginally.  This shows the understanding from landlords and tenants that long term success comes from sustained investment.”

The research found that budget brands have expanded since the last review, with the likes of Shoe Zone, Peacocks and Card Factory all moving up the occupancy table and Poundland undertaking the largest single occupier expansion. The mobile phone sector has undertaken the most expansion overall.

It also found that 95% of the 500 leading schemes now have stores trading every Sunday, up from 92% in the 2008 review.

Other findings included food not being the driver of shopping centre, with 97 of the top 100 schemes being comparison dominated. There are almost 32,000 retail units within the 500 leading schemes, and some 24,000 are occupied by major comparison goods retailers or groups with turnovers in excess of £3million pa, involving 1,500 different trading fascias.

The research also shows the emergence of a premier division of 27 leading shopping centres that includes newcomers St David's, Cardiff and Liverpool One.
 

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