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Could Street Furniture Save The High Street?

Between January and September last year, 964 town centre stores were closed across the UK. This exceeds the figure for the previous year, which was 60% lower. The largest drop was for clothing shops, compared to the rising number of betting shops thriving in the decline of the high street. It wasn’t only retail which fell but also the number of pawnbrokers and travel agents across the nation.


The high street is beginning to look very different

One trend of the declining high street is the emergence of a number of coffee shops and cafés in town centres. In addition, more banks, charity shops, fast food restaurants and convenience stores have opened throughout 2014, replacing clothes stores and other retail outlets. Another newly developing niche in the former High Street is the presence of American-style restaurants and bars.


Preserving the high street

We live in an age that is digital and beginning to move towards online sales. This makes it favourable to visit larger retail centres and sees a change in the high street dynamic towards instant products and fast foods and services. But town centres don’t need to become empty. Admittedly, when shops close down and are replaced, it can leave streets looking bare and run-down.


A revamp could boost local business

It doesn’t have to be the end of the high street as we know it. Despite change, there are ways of bringing life back into town centres and giving their aesthetics new life. Waltham Forest is just one council which has brought back activity to their high street. They introduced new colouring of shops, embraced the café culture that had arisen, working with local businesses to achieve a result that they were happy with. As a result, Leyton High Road in Waltham Forest received the award for Best Town Centre Project at the 2014 London Planning Awards.


Street furniture – making the difference

Street furniture is just one feature that could save the future of the high street by making it a more pleasant place and encouraging people to visit there by improving the aesthetics. Whether the area needs to be modernised with features such as the concrete MESA Bench or simply made litter free with the ARCA Circular Litter Bin , there are many options to revamp any town centre.


Ways to rejuvenate your town centre

A key way to rejuvenate a town centre is to be consistent and create a new look for it – bring in elements of design and street furniture to suit the area. Things that you can change to make a big difference include: signs, benches, railings and plants. More practical things such as bins can dramatically approve a town centre if there is litter, making it a more pleasant environment.


For more information and advice about giving your town centre a new look, get in touch with Furnitubes today on 020 8378 3200.

Author: Anna Curran - Follow us on


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