Lincoln high street set to be fashion fabulous

Lincoln’s high street has never been a shopping hotspot, and with 15% of its shop space currently empty, it’s no wonder that residents are beginning to take their custom elsewhere.

20-year-old Student, Lucy Carlton says that she rarely visits the shops in Lincoln.

“It’s only a short drive to Meadowhall which is much better; I can’t remember the last time I shopped in Lincoln apart from food shopping!”

Lincoln town centre is ranked 4th worst in the county for empty shop space and the once-popular Waterside mall is seen by some as “dark and uninviting”


The public have the chance to have their say on what shops should be in the Waterside. Photo: Jonathan Cresswell

The University of Lincoln has brought more than 10,000 students to the city and has helped to boost the local economy, but Carlton says “it just doesn’t compete with other cities”.

However, the Waterside shopping centre located on the high street is set for a revamp and new owners Capital and Regional PLC have said that they will be investing £5 million into its refurbishment.

There are currently seven empty spaces in the shopping complex which the new company intends to fill as part of its transformation into a fully occupied, attractive trading centre.

A survey is to be held on a website created by Lincoln Big, which will give residents and visitors a chance to vote for their favourite shops.

The most popular shops voted for could eventually fill the centre’s vacant spots by the time the revamp is complete.

The refurbishment could help Lincoln to compete with nearby cities such as Derby, Nottingham and Sheffield, which have a lot more on offer.

Derby’s Westfield mall has over 190 different stores, Nottingham is ranked in the UK’s top five shopping destinations. Meadowhall, located in Sheffield, has over 280 different stores; and hosts a variety of fashion events in its Gallery.

We asked a few high street shoppers their views on Lincoln’s town centre and which shops they’ll be voting for in the online survey.

Louise Smith, 19, says: “I’d like to see maybe a H&M and an Apple shop. At the moment it’s [Waterside mall] quite small and there’s a only a few shops I go in like Topshop and Newlook, so it’s a bit limited.”

Fiona McConnachie , 20, says she likes the shops in Lincoln but her home town Ipswich is “much better.” She says: “I’d like to see H&M maybe, and Zara, that’d be nice.”

3 Responses to Lincoln high street set to be fashion fabulous

  1. Frances Hutchinson says:

    I love shopping in Lincoln! However I come from a very small town in Devon, so comapred to my hometown Lincoln has many many shops. My home town never even had a Primark. I think the empty shops do need filling, but an Apple shop, most students can’t afford them.

  2. Den Esberger says:

    When I was growing up in Lincoln in the 1960s/70s there wasn’t this great urge to go to other cities to buy your clothes and shoes as you could buy anything you needed in Lincoln even if you were a Mod or Suedehead or even your average Skinhead/Rocker or just a normal guy in the street.

    Are the younger generation becoming more choosey or is it that their mates go out of town to do their fashion shopping and they don’t want to be seen as somebody unfashionable so they have to do it as well.

  3. Beth says:

    I don’t think Lincoln is bad at all, the shops further up the hill are lovely and it’s great to see smaller and independent shops rather than huge chains!

    the comment on Meadowhall.. “Meadowhall is just a short drive away” I don’t think would apply to the majority of students, not many students have a car.