Rocketing numbers of store closures have added to the problem with many fearing traditional British high streets are doomed.
The crisis is being blamed on a “perfect storm” of soaring business rates, high rents, online shopping and a changing retail culture.
A study by the Centre for Retail Research has also shown the pace of job losses and store closures has accelerated throughout the year.
Since January 52,781 retail jobs have been lost, three times more than the whole of 2017.
The study also found 2,227 stores have closed in 2018, double the figure for last year.
Those figures rise dramatically if small stores such as Newsagents and independent shops are included, the study indicates.
These are the highest figures since 2008 when Britain was in the grip of the recession caused by the financial crisis. Last year 16,902 jobs were lost, with 1,075 stores shut.
The grim statistics emerged as traders are still reeling from the closure of more than half of House of Fraser’s 51 stores and the recent problems of Debenhams.
Professor Joshua Bamfield, who produced the study, said: “Everyone is feeling the pressure.”
Paddy Lillis of the shop workers union, said: “Employing around three million people, the retail sector contributes 11 per cent to the UK economic output, so it is clear the challenges affecting the sector have a huge knock-on effect, impacting the UK economy and a significant number of workers.”
Many big name retailers have lost out as they face ferce competition from the rise of online shopping…
Closing 92 stores across the UK.
Toys R Us
Went into administration in February, leading to an estimated 2,000 redundancies.
House of Fraser
On the verge of heading into administration but was rescued by Sports Direct owner Mike Ashley.
The electronics giant has gone bust, closing shops across the country and putting thousands of jobs at risk.
Closing 60 shops across the UK putting up to 900 jobs at risk.
The bargain store announced it was going into administration on June 11, putting 5,100 jobs at risk.
Set to close 42 DIY outlets, putting around 1,500 jobs at risk.
Marks & Spencer
Plans to close 100 stores by 2022, putting hundreds of jobs at risk.
Made a full-year loss of £491.5 million and plans to close 50 of its 165 stores.The move could lead to 4,000 job losses
Source : EXPRESS