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The future of Harrow’s high streets

In the UK as a whole, the pandemic has had a huge impact on high-street shops, and Harrow is no exception. The future of Harrow’s high streets is questionable due to the growth of online shopping and the closure of numerous significant stores. But, there are also causes for hope, as the region’s multicultural population and a strong sense of community might spur a revival in the borough’s retail and small business expansion.

Harrow Town Centre, one of the borough’s most well-known shopping spots, has a long history and lively markets that draw people in. The town centre has, however, also seen difficulties recently, with a number of high-profile closures such as The Landmark. Yet, there are plans to revitalise the region, including a new food market, opening this month, and initiatives to draw in new companies and investment. There have also been positive changes in the additions of the Puttstars Golf Centre, B&Q Local and a huge Sports Direct which are all welcome additions to the town centre – and all within the last year.

Another important high street in the area is Edgware. In the centre of Edgware, there is a well-known shopping centre you all would have heard of called. Edgware Broadwalk. We took a look at the history of this recently. The Broadwalk retail centre is a well-liked hangout for diners and shoppers alike thanks to its assortment of high street shops, eateries, and cafes.

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A large Sainsbury’s supermarket serves as the focal point of the shopping centre, which is home to a range of businesses that serve various needs and preferences. They include home and leisure merchants like Wilko, Poundland, and Card Factory as well as fashion and beauty outlets like Boots, Superdrug, and TK Maxx. Costa Coffee, Greggs, and Subway are just a few of the food and beverage options available in and around the shopping centre.

The accessibility of Edgware Broadwalk is one of its unique qualities. The shopping centre is close to Edgware Tube Station, making it simple for people using public transportation to get there. Also, there is a sizable parking lot, bike racks, and electric vehicle charging stations on-site, making it simple for customers to get to and from the centre.

The future of Harrow's high streets Harrow Online
Edgware Broadwalk car park entrance.

Throughout the year, Edgware Broadwalk also holds many events and activities in addition to its shops and eateries. Visitors will find these events vibrant and interesting because they can include live music performances, seasonal markets, and charity fundraising events.

One major development currently underway is the Edgware Green development, a mixed-use development which will bring new homes, shops, and community spaces to the area. The development will include a new town square, which will be surrounded by shops, cafes, and restaurants, providing a focal point for the community and a new destination for shoppers.

In addition to the Edgware Green development, there are also plans to improve transport links in the area, which will make it even easier for shoppers to access the various retail destinations in Edgware.

Furthermore, the rise of e-commerce and online shopping has led to a greater emphasis on experiential retail and the creation of engaging and memorable shopping experiences. Edgware’s shopping destinations are well-positioned to take advantage of this trend, with the Broadwalk shopping centre and other local retail destinations able to offer a range of amenities, entertainment, and events moving forward.

Another major high street in Harrow that has seen difficulties recently is Rayners Lane, which has a number of vacant units and a drop in foot traffic. To revitalise the area, however, there are plans for a new co-working space and initiatives to draw in new companies and investments from across the capital.

The future of Harrow's high streets Harrow Online
Rayners Lane Station. (Credit: Bill Chalmers)

High streets in Harrow face an uncertain future overall, but there are causes for optimism. The area’s diversified population, vibrant culture, and distinctive selling factors could drive a revival of neighbourhood commerce and small business expansion. Together, local businesses, residents, and the council can contribute to keeping Harrow’s high streets lively and enticing destinations for travel and retail therapy.

How do you find shopping in Harrow? what do you think the future holds? we would be thrilled to hear your thoughts and opinions via our social media channels, comment away and give us your feedback.

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