Comment: The slow, painful demise of The Postings Shopping Centre
It’s been painful to watch the slow demise of the Postings Shopping Centre.
A place that once bustled with activity has withered on the vine.
The imminent departure of Farmfoods leaves it with just one unit in operation, underlining that its day as a place for retail is over.
Many other towns and cities have seen similar centres contract despite being part of busy bus stations as consumer habits and the needs of retailers have both changed.
So much of the decline came under its previous owner, Columbia Threadneedle, which didn’t move with the times, and eventually gave up completely, putting it up for auction with a £1 price tag which simply brought more un-necessary negative headlines to our town centre.
But it was the closure of Tesco in 2015 which was the fatal blow.
It brought people through its doors, and supplied the adjacent shops - including Farmfoods - with customers.
Without that anchor tenant, the centre listed badly.
New owner Tahir Ali has put in more time and effort to turning it around, only to be thwarted by COVID and Brexit.
The departure of Farmfoods gives him an almost clean slate to re-think the entire site.
And we need a new approach to all aspects of the town centre as it faces a future very different from its past - one where retail will only form part, not all, of its base.
The mix with residential and recreational holds the key to a bright future.
Much work has been done, and more is coming …