'Rate cuts don't go far enough'

SHOPKEEPERS in Abingdon’s precinct say a cut in business rates may not be enough to help them to survive redevelopment work.

Traders in the Abbey Shopping Centre have been offered a five per cent reduction while work on a £4m revamp takes place.

Last month store owners told the Oxford Mail that scaffolding and hoarding was deterring shoppers and if they were not given rates reductions they may close before work finished in the autumn.

Ian Collett, owner of The Bookstore, pictured, said the cut offered by Government would still not be enough as his takings had fallen by 50 per cent last month.

He said: “It’s awful. I’m working in the middle of a building site at the moment. Because it’s all boarded in and so narrow people aren’t looking left or right anymore they are just looking straight ahead.”

Abingdon Chamber of Commerce member Peter Wiblin, who owns Abingdon News Plus in the precinct, said he would settle for a 10 per cent reduction.

He said: “Some traders’ turnover has been affected by up to 20 per cent. This is the difference between making a profit and making a loss.”

Martin Hughes, spokesman for NewRiver, who manage the precinct on behalf of owners Scottish Widows Investment Partnership, said it was hoping to secure further rates discounts.

Comments (4)

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12:20pm Wed 6 Jun 12

wizardofox2 says...

Surely it's a Rent reduction/rebate the traders should be seeking? not a reduction in rates, after all it's not a government lead project, ask Scottish Widow for a rent break !
Surely it's a Rent reduction/rebate the traders should be seeking? not a reduction in rates, after all it's not a government lead project, ask Scottish Widow for a rent break ! wizardofox2
  • Score: 1

10:32am Thu 7 Jun 12

Abberdon says...

Quite so.

And the threatened 'new' look looks terrible too.

No guarantee anyone will return after the remake either.

Still, that's the style in Abberdon, second rate seems to be the way to go.
Quite so. And the threatened 'new' look looks terrible too. No guarantee anyone will return after the remake either. Still, that's the style in Abberdon, second rate seems to be the way to go. Abberdon
  • Score: 0

1:14pm Fri 8 Jun 12

aet123 says...

Abberdon wrote:
Quite so. And the threatened 'new' look looks terrible too. No guarantee anyone will return after the remake either. Still, that's the style in Abberdon, second rate seems to be the way to go.
Abberdon - I believe the project is only about a quarter the way through, perhaps it would be better to save your comments until you have something visible to comment on!

As for Abingdon being 'second rate' if you live here maybe you should move and if you don't, then don't visit us.
[quote][p][bold]Abberdon[/bold] wrote: Quite so. And the threatened 'new' look looks terrible too. No guarantee anyone will return after the remake either. Still, that's the style in Abberdon, second rate seems to be the way to go.[/p][/quote]Abberdon - I believe the project is only about a quarter the way through, perhaps it would be better to save your comments until you have something visible to comment on! As for Abingdon being 'second rate' if you live here maybe you should move and if you don't, then don't visit us. aet123
  • Score: 0

8:49am Sat 9 Jun 12

Iain L says...

Aberdon - do you think this sort of comment is going to help the independent traders in Abingdon who are have invested their money in this town?

The traders who I have spoken to are excited about the development and feel it is long overdue. The problem, correctly highlighted in the article is that trading conditions are very difficult during the works, and I hope they are successful in negotiating rent and rate reductions during this time.

People who want to support independent retail in Abingdon should make sure they continue to do their shopping in town during the works. Talking down the end design, which a long gone debate, doesn't hel traders, shoppers, residents or anyone else I can think of and just risks creating some sort of self fulfilling prophesy.

My request to you Aberdon is to please stop talking down the town - which I don't think from some of your earlier posts is your intention.
Aberdon - do you think this sort of comment is going to help the independent traders in Abingdon who are have invested their money in this town? The traders who I have spoken to are excited about the development and feel it is long overdue. The problem, correctly highlighted in the article is that trading conditions are very difficult during the works, and I hope they are successful in negotiating rent and rate reductions during this time. People who want to support independent retail in Abingdon should make sure they continue to do their shopping in town during the works. Talking down the end design, which a long gone debate, doesn't hel traders, shoppers, residents or anyone else I can think of and just risks creating some sort of self fulfilling prophesy. My request to you Aberdon is to please stop talking down the town - which I don't think from some of your earlier posts is your intention. Iain L
  • Score: 0

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