This is what the high street of the future will look like

John Timpson knows a thing or two about the high street. The chairman of the UK shoe-repair chain that bears his family name was, after all, entrusted to lead a 2018 government review into what the future UK high street would look like. Though at one time he envisaged a future where the number of shops in British town centres would have halved, he could never have imagined how quickly that revolution would come. The impact of the pandemic on our towns and cities has, he says, been seismic: “What…

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Inside ghost town shopping centre that lies abandoned 25 years after opening

An abandoned shopping centre lies empty and derelict 25 years after its flagship opening. Five Sisters Freeport Shopping Village in West Lothian, Scotland, opened in 1996, with over 40 stores, claiming to be Scotland’s new premier outlet for designer clothes. But after a huge decline by 2004, Freeport Leisure decided it was time to close the centre down and they shut up shop. The site has been derelict ever since, with the BBC using it for filming on a zombie children’s show in 2015, Edinburgh Live reports. The 50,000sq ft shopping centre attracted over a…

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Preston’s £40m Animate takes a step forward

Maple Grove Developments is forging ahead with its plans to redevelop the city’s former indoor market site into a leisure scheme featuring an eight-screen cinema and a 16-lane bowling alley. The Leach Rhodes Walker-designed project also features, five restaurant and bar units, a street food hub, and a 164-space car park.  Maple Grove, which is delivering Animate for Preston City Council, has lodged a planning application for the scheme five years after an earlier iteration of the project was approved.  The development has changed over recent years in response to current…

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