York has second fewest high street vacancies in Britain

York city centre has fewer vacancies on the high street than almost any other city in Britain.

A report published by the Centre For Cities on 19 February revealed that York has 7% of vacant businesses, just 0.1% behind Cambridge which tops the league table.

The finding was welcomed by Executive Director of the York BID, Andrew Lowson.

He said: “York has a great offer for locals and visitors from further afield. It has great independent shops, a thriving food and drink sector and some fantastic retail.

“Combined with a year round events calendar, you can see why businesses want to locate to York and why the shop vacancy rates are so low.

“At the same time, York BID refuses to be complacent, as we know some of our traditional shopping streets have large units that are vacant and create a poor impression.

“We continue to look at creative ways of helping the appearance, such as window wraps or pop up shops and working with partners to encourage new tenants.”


Work with partners

Others welcoming the news included City of York Council leader Ian Gillies who said the prosperity of the high street was a key priority and pledged to “work with partners to make a positive impact on its robustness and to secure continued growth”.

And Andrew Sharp, Head of Business at Make It York said: “It is pleasing to see York feature strongly in this report.

“Despite some recent challenges, York retains a highly attractive city centre retail offer, with exceptional quality independents and top name brands, as well as a thriving leisure offer, making it one of the best retail locations in the north of England.”

♦ You can read the full report, City Centres: Past, Present and Futurehere.