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High streets show an optimistic picture

High streets show an optimistic picture

Waverley Borough Council has published its biannual vacancy rates for the eight biggest High Streets in Waverley and the picture is encouraging.

On average, the vacancy rate across Bramley, Cranleigh, Milford, Farncombe, Farnham, Godalming, Haslemere and Wey Hill is just 6.5% which is less than half the national average of 14.1%.

Apart from in Milford where there is just one new vacancy, the rates in the other seven high streets have stayed the same or gone down since February 2021.

Councillor Liz Townsend, Waverley’s portfolio holder for economic development,  says: “The figures make for positive reading and are a sign that more businesses are feeling optimistic about their prospects. We are committed to supporting a strong, resilient local economy and have put measures in place to help businesses that have been hardest hit by the pandemic.

“There is no doubt that the face of the high street and people’s shopping habits are changing. We have seen that businesses in some sectors can no longer rely on a bricks and mortar presence as being sufficient for survival and that their physical site needs to be backed up with an online profile. To help grow resilience, we have offered free digital skills workshops to small businesses and are sponsoring an initiative called Click It Local which is a virtual High Street that enables retailers to sell online.”

Waverley has a reputation for having a high number of independent retailers. Anybody who is thinking about setting up shop in Waverley can get free business support and advice from Enterprise South. The Waverley Business Adviser is Sue Davitt at sue.davitt@enterprisesouth.co.uk.

If you are interested in being notified about Waverley’s vacancy rates in February and receiving local business news and information, please subscribe to receive the Waverley business enewsletter.   


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