Lidl is latest to check out of Camden High Street

More empty units in Camden Town – but what will come next?

Friday, 22nd April — By Isabelle Stanley

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Lidl is to shut up shop in Camden Town

LOW-cost supermarket Lidl is set to quit Camden Town in a blow for bargain-hunting shoppers struggling with price rises.

The retailer’s exit will mean another prime shop unit will need filling on Camden High Street – which is already pock-marked by empty sites. One in 10 now stand vacant.

A bargain homeware shop in the large unit once home to Burger King also shut up shop this week.

Simon Pitkeathley, chief executive of business group Camden Town Unlimited, said: “There’s always churn on Camden High Street, always businesses coming and going – there was a Waitrose there – but the worry here is that we end up with an empty lot.”

Explaining the high turnover, he said: “It’s a market that’s difficult to predict because we’ve got a lot of different people using it, and then the pandemic has had a massive impact. Businesses have to adapt.”

The short-lived Waitrose in the High Street was replaced by an Aldi in 2018.

Mr Pitkeathley said: “We’re going to see an increase in experiences on the high street. People come to high streets more to do things than to buy things now, because we’ve learned to shop online.”

As Lidl closes, there have been further announcements of new arrivals around the market sites: a Lara Croft Tomb Raider experience, a Peaky Blinders experience and a new amusement park. Mr Pitkeathley said that in 10 years the High Street will be full of “anything you have to come to a place to do, things you can’t do online, like get your hair done, see friends – that’s where you’re going to see growth”.

Lidl had not responded to the New Journal’s request for comment at time of going to press.

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