Opinion: Time for a reset of retail rent and rates

Ian Middleton

In 2015 I closed the last of my stores due to spiralling property costs. There’s not a day since that I haven’t missed them.

Face-to-face customer interaction can never be properly replicated online but, sadly, in a post-Covid world that has become the Achilles’ heel of bricks and mortar.

The decision I took five years ago to withdraw from the high street has never looked so serendipitous. Many retailers were already struggling with the same problems before coronavirus, and the idea that they will be able to reopen on June 15 and meet their overhead costs with a seriously reduced capacity to trade is the stuff of fantasy.

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