Aldershot: A sign of the times

99p Stores closing down

99p Stores closing down

In Revolution, Russell Brand talks of Greys, a run down town in Essex, boarded-up shops, betting shops, charity shops, junk food outlets, pound shops. It could be any run down town.  It could be Aldershot.

Paul Mason holds the same conversation in PostCapitalism.

When the pound shop is closing down, you know things are bad.

Workers used to have money jangling in their pockets, money to spend. Now they are in precarious work, part-time, temporary, zero-hours McShit jobs. If they have money, it is from the pay day lender at extortionate interest rate.

When a government imposes a Bedroom Tax on the poor, it is not only the individual households that are hit, it is money drained out of the local economy.

Aldershot today was dead. It was never busy, but not as bad as today.

Speaking to a few local businesses, they agreed. it was dead, but added, it had been like this every day since the beginning of the year.

End of last year, M&S pulled out, they saw no future in the town. Neither does anyone else.

There are three pound shops in the town. There is not the demand to support three pound shops.

99p Stores is closing, but in a few weeks, following renovation, it will re-open as Poundland.

It would have closed, a new landlord wanted to jack up the rent. Poundland have dictated the rent. Either we pay what is realistic for this dead town, or we pull out, take it or leave it.

Many of the market stalls have pulled out. One of the  market stalls has relocated to  the grotty shopping centre for three days a week, for the rent they were paying the local council for one day in the street.

What has destroyed Aldershot is decades of bad planning, lack of understanding of what constitutes good town centre planning, and lack of understanding of how local economies function.


2 Responses to “Aldershot: A sign of the times”

  1. Peter Coulson Says:

    It’s not closing because there is not the demand, but simply because Poundland bought the 99p store chain. They are great shops for many household items. Much cheaper than the supermarkets, who clearly rip us off.

  2. keithpp Says:

    There is not the demand in Aldershot to support three pound shops.

    99p Stores will be closed, renovated, open some time in March, as a Poundland.

    Meanwhile in Farnborough, Holland & Barrett have pulled out of Kingsmead, relocated to Princess Mead.

    How long will it be before Kingsmead is a ghost shopping centre like the one in Aldershot?

    Kingmead already resembles a move set for a post-Apocalypse movie. It comes with local residents as zombies.

    When leases expire, retailers pull out.

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