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News Release


New analysis of rental levels points to pockets of high street resilience beyond London

-Rental levels in over a third of the top 200 UK retail locations  are at or exceed pre-crash levels

-Locations such as Oxford, Bath, Brighton and Colchester performing well despite challenging market conditions

London, 10th September 2013 -  New research into rental levels from Jones Lang LaSalle shows that while London is still achieving rental record rates, pockets of resilience and retail growth exist in other areas of the UK, highlighting that the high street is far from dead.

Comparing 2013 to 2007 Rental LevelsThe graph comparing current rental levels across the top 200 UK retail locations with 2007/08 levels, shows that while levels are below the rental pre-crash peak for 61% of the locations, 39% are now setting new record headline rents.

Gains extend beyond Central London

The research highlights that larger locations such as Guildford, Oxford, Bath, Brighton, Colchester, Winchester, Edinburgh and York have recorded rents exceeding pre 2008 peak levels. While there is unlikely to be a wave of development in the near future,  selective development will be the trigger for rental growth in some locations.

Record rents in Central London are being fuelled by continued global retailer demand for the right space in the right location and the capital is benefitting from its position as a global prime retail destination. Prime rents in New Bond Street now exceed £1200 per sq ft, an increase of 80% since 2007. Notable Bond Street deals which have driven this include Chanel’s £5 million lease for a flagship store and fashion retailer Belstaff who took on a 20 year lease for £3 million per annum.

James Brown, Head of Retail Consulting at Jones Lang LaSalle, commented: “Commentators talk about the state of the market in the broadest terms, but it is clear from our analysis that there is resilience on the high street outside of London and that we need to monitor the market in a much more granular way. For instance, Trinity Leeds, the latest UK shopping centre had a 90% let at opening, demonstrating that demand exists for the right space in the right location. Opportunities still clearly exist and while some areas will continue to slide against the backdrop of challenging market conditions, locations with strong fundamentals and a broader appeal will continue to outperform.”

Tim Vallance, Head of UK Retail at Jones Lang LaSalle, added: “It is clear that across the UK rental growth in the short to medium term will be the exception rather than the rule. However, we shouldn’t forget there is current demand for over 25 million square feet of retail and leisure space in the UK and six years of incessant economic headwinds and  exponential speed of change in shopping technology shouldn’t cloud the good growth stories about the high street that do exist.”

Notes to editors

Attached is a chart comparing 2013 to 2007 rental levels.