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 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.”Tweet