Retail parks hit by exodus

Kasmira Jefford
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EMPTY space on UK retail parks increased by its fastest rate for four years in 2012 because of casualties in the troubled retail sector, research published yesterday shows.

Retail property consultancy Trevor Wood Associates said the collapse of big names including Comet, JJB Sports and Peacocks pushed the vacancy rate for UK retail warehousing to 9.9 per cent at the end of 2012, up from 9.1 per cent six months before.

This is the fastest rise since 2008 and the highest vacancy rate since the middle of 2010, the report showed.

It does not take into account high-profile retail collapses from the first three months of this year among retailers including HMV, Dreams and Blockbuster.