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Retail property sector struggles while demand for industrial space is booming – report

Written by Peter Davison on .

Andrew KilpatrickAndrew KilpatrickOccupier demand for industrial and distribution space across the UK has increased from minus two percent in quarter two to plus five percent in quarter three, according to the latest commercial property market survey from the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors.

But demand for retail space continues to struggle, in the face of the first annual drop in retail sales for five years.

Demand for office space, meanwhile, remains steady, while investment enquiries continued to increase nationally, as did interest from overseas buyers in the UK property investment market.

Andrew Kilpatrick of Kilpatrick & Co, who contributes to the report, said: “Swindon’s commercial market is seeing activity pick up slowly after the summer holiday period.

“Whilst the retail sector continues to be challenging, the summer has at least seen work start on the new Metro Bank building at the entrance to The Parade, and work underway to convert the former British Home Stores ready for Wilko’s to move into.

“Eighty percent of the former BHS properties in the UK are still vacant after receivership, so Swindon is ahead of the game.

“The Parade’s successes has also seen Greggs to relocate to larger premises and Smiggle open in The Parade.

“Elsewhere in the town centre, planning permission has been granted for the redevelopment of the former tented market to provide 4 new restaurants, 1 shop and 101 residential apartments, in a new 8-15 storey building.”

Kilpatrick & Co has just been listed as one of the Top Three Surveyors in Swindon in 2017 by ThreeBestRated.