Viewpoint - 08/07/2015

Sunday trading to boost retail in big cities

Plans to relax Sunday trading laws, as outlined by Chancellor George Osborne in today’s Summer Budget, will be positive for many retailers and their landlords – particularly for those located in major retail centres.

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Under the proposals announced earlier, the government will consult on devolving powers on Sunday trading to city mayors and local authorities. At present, only shops below 3,000 sq ft can open for more than six hours on the Sabbath. 

Extended Sunday opening is potentially good news for bricks and mortar retailers and retail landlords.  We’d expect a modest increase in total high street spend as consumers are given greater choice in where and when they spend their money.  This will be most evident in Central London and the major regional centres, where there is likely to be pent-up demand from consumers.

In some cases, a relaxation of the rules could give bricks and mortar retailers a real boost in their ongoing fight against internet-based shopping.

Where spending and profits do rise, there is likely to be upward pressure on rents driving future rent reviews, so the benefits could also ultimately be passed on to landlords.

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