YP Letters: High street rent rises pose a threat to family businesses

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From: Edward Grainger, Botany Way, Nunthorpe, Middlesbrough.

ANDREW Vine (The Yorkshire Post, January 29) certainly struck a realistic tone with his well chosen reasons for the slow demise of Britain’s high streets.

Santander branch closures have brought the future of Yorkshire high streets under fresh scrutiny.

Santander branch closures have brought the future of Yorkshire high streets under fresh scrutiny.

His particular reference to ever higher rents forced on a variety of business premises 
by greedy landlords is very relevant.

Andrew Vine: Banks owe it to us all to invest in high streets

I know this from a personal level – members of my family were, for three years, trying to survive on a daily basis running a seven-day-a-week restaurant/cafe on the high street of a market town in North Yorkshire.

The business, with its long hours and very small profit margin, faced continual rises in ground rents, year upon year, by a property owner who became quite ruthless.

In one year, they increased the rent for the business by over £3,000 which made the annual rent in total impossible to sustain in terms of keeping the business healthy and vibrant.

No high street family business can survive under such circumstances.

Incidentally the North Yorkshire market town has since lost both banks and its Santander branch is in serious threat of closure.

Other businesses still open are not surprisingly hanging on by the skin of their teeth.