Retail forecast: sunshine with the occasional shower

There is a positive vibe from the retail industry ahead of this year’s BCSC conference.

The £90m Old Market in Hereford, designed by Leslie Jones Architecture and Allies & Morrison, is now fully let and the opening of the Leslie Jones designed London Designer Outlet in Wembley has delivered the first scheme of its kind within the M25.

2014 has not however been without setbacks, both Jane Norman and La Senza have gone into administration, the latter for the second time in two years, and the four main supermarkets have regularly hit the headlines for the wrong reasons – from profit warnings to senior departures.

One thing that remains abundantly clear as we exit recession is that landlords and retailers need to really get under the skin of the consumer to ensure the retail environment meets their needs. Shopping centres need to be characterful, creating a sense of place that appeals to the catchment area and target demographic. This requires more than just an additional food and beverage offering, but new and genuine experiences with a real mix of uses that provide for the population it serves.

We are working with many owners and developers, both here in the UK and internationally, to meet these needs and ensure the relevance and success of our retail destinations for the future.