A third of all independent high-street shops are now cafés, pubs, restaurants and take-aways, a new survey has revealed.
Business insurance provider Simply Business studied 75,000 high-street businesses it has quoted since 2008 and found that 31% were restaurants, pubs or cafés, an increase of 2% since 2008.
The figures also highlight some regional high-street hot spots:
â- London is, predictably, the restaurant capital of the UK - 11% of high-street businesses are restaurants, 5% higher than the national average.
â- The South-west, Wales and the North-east are top for coffee, with 12% of shops taken up by cafés or coffee shops, 1% higher than the average.
â- Scotland is top for take-aways - 6% compared with 5% nationally.
â- In contrast, the number of independent clothes shops has declined, making up only 5% of high-street businesses in 2010, compared with 6% two years ago.
Jason Stockwood, chief executive at Simply Business, said: "The business climate has clearly been more favourable for some retail businesses than others and this has influenced the make-up of high streets across the UK. While it's great that food and drink businesses are doing well, it's worrying to see that certain sectors such as fashion and newsagents are in decline, with competition from the big high-street brands a likely cause."
By Neil Gerrard
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