Six empty shops remain closed in The Glades shopping centre in Bromley.

The view of empty shops or retail units for sale has become a normal site for many businesses and residents in the past year after the pandemic hit.

The British Retail Consortium (BRC) and Local Data Company (LDC) found that fashion retailers had been hardest hit with the continued surge in online business in the sector and the closure of high street institutions including Debenhams and Topshop.

News Shopper:

Shopping centres were the hardest hit, with nearly one in five units sitting empty – a 19.4 per cent vacancy rate – followed by high streets with a vacancy rate of 14.5 per cent.

Overall vacancy rates were 14.5% in Britain, up from 14.1% in the first quarter of the year – meaning the number of empty shops has increased for the past three years.

Over in The Glades, several stores remained dormant in between bigger surviving chains - such as Zara and H&M.

On Tuesday (August 17), News Shopper took a trip to The Glades.

We counted some six store fronts that were either boarded up, permanently closed or lying empty behind locked glass doors.

Going across two floors was Debenhams, still with its signage on.

News Shopper:

Others did not still have their signs attached, but were completely empty.

During our walk round The Glades, we spoke to shop assistants of shops which were still open.

The assistant at one store who wishes to remain anonymous said how "sad" it is to see empty units.

News Shopper:

She said: "It's so sad, I really miss the people who used to work in these units.

"Lockdown has done us in.

"Look at retail now, we need to bring it back."

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