Whilst many of us are still in lockdown staring at our four walls dreaming of the day when we can return freely to the outside world. One of the things we loved to do was shopping in the High Street. Most likely with our mother, sisters and friends looking for things to wear to the next wedding or your own!
However, when we do return we’ll sadly see some changes. The department store Debenhams has been forced off the High Street. Been sold to internet retailer Boohoo.com with the closure of some 124 stores. Several factors may be to blame for the end of the 242-year business on the High Street. The trend for online shopping, painful business rates, heavy debts built up during the tenureship of private-equity.
It is a real blow as most of the stores were considered prime retail property. For me Debenhams was always a bit of a go-to for problem solving. ie What will I wear for the upcoming event but also with its in-store cafe it was great for a chat with others to tease us things that were on our minds over a milky latte and an iced bun.
We have also lost Woolworths, British Home Stores, and C&A. The trend for shopping online has been going on for some time now. Today we hear that Boohoo have also bought Dorothy Perkins, Burton and Wallis for £25 million. Thats made the business Not on the High Street a sort of pioneer!
Most of these stores carried lines that were relevant to the wedding industry. I am sure for all you brides-to-be who had Debenhams in their store list not just for dresses and shoes but also makeup and beauty products. Not just Debenhams but now Boohoo holds many brands that were common haunts.
Boohoo is an internet only business meaning we won’t be able to try on that size 12 in a store anymore. We will adapt, in a way it seems like that is what Boohoo sees. We wish them well we’ve practically entrusted our High Street to them. The good news thanks to Boohoo you can still get all those branded goods, just not the store experience.