May 20 2013

Harrow Shops: Empty Shop Rates at 4% in Town Centre

harrow_council_logoShop vacancy rates across Britain’s recession-hit high streets are at an all time high, but latest figures reveal Harrow’s rates to be amongst the lowest in the country.

A survey of the British Retail Consortium shows Greater London shop vacancy rates to be at 7.4 per cent while Northern Ireland has the most empty stores at 18.1 per cent. Harrow’s empty shop rates have dropped over the past three years and currently stand at four per cent in the Town Centre.

Harrow Council is doing everything in its power to support the town centre, local shopping districts, and local businesses. Over the past 12 months the Council has attracted thousands of extra shoppers to the town centre. Regular European Markets, Antiques Markets, breathtaking light displays for Diwali, and a live performance by X-Factor star and local resident, Kye Sones, at last year’s Christmas light switch-on have all played a part. To boost local trade further the Council will roll out 20 minutes free parking across the borough during the run-up to Christmas.

Mohamed Saleem, 37, is the latest entrepreneur to start up a business in Harrow. The grand opening of his Restaurant, Cafe and Events venue , ‘The Global Village’, took place on Friday. According to Mr Saleem:

“The cultural diversity of the borough and the amount of effort the Council makes to ensure local businesses thrive was the main attraction for coming to Harrow out of all other London Boroughs.

“The Global Village attempts to Celebrate the Colours, Cultures and Communities we live in through international cuisine. Currently offering a range of Indo Pakistani, Chinese, Afghan, and Sri Lankan food prepared in our live kitchen with unique desserts in our adjoining coffee and dessert bar. Along with this we are also setting up ‘The Global Village Project’ as a charity to give back to the Harrow community as we progress.

“Harrow is a great location to do business and it’s no surprise that the shop vacancy rates are amongst the very lowest in the country.

“The Council’s relationship with the local business community is fantastic and its finger is on the pulse when it comes to new and innovative ideas to keep the momentum going.”

Harrow Council Leader, Cllr Thaya Idaikkadar, attended the grand opening of the Global Village, with the Mayor of Harrow, Cllr Nizam Ismail. He said:

“It is absolutely vital that we support our local businesses in any way that we can and these latest figures which show vacancy rates to be so low is testimony to that fact. We welcome the Global Village with open arms and I’m sure we will continue to see quality businesses choosing Harrow as place to start up a new venture.”

Source: Harrow Council

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