With so many empty shops on the high street, could some be used for community activities?
Recently, my local BHS store closed. This leaves a large shop vacant in the town centre and it's only one of many. The available space may not be attractive to other retailers so making an alternative use of it sounds like a good idea.
There are numerous benefits.
- convenient location for leisure and public services
- more visitors to town centres, etc.
- transport services generally available to central areas
- rental income and local tax revenue
- utilises empty retail space
How Might It Work?
There are empty shops of various sizes in most towns. A community group or charity could use one of these to offer services to local residents. This could be leisure activities, information services, a social meeting place, sublet space to clubs for their activities, a base for projects, rooms for functions and special events.
Often these premises can be rented on a short term basis. It is possible to pick up second hand furniture and equipment at a good price or you could request donations of these items. You will also need to pay for utilities, insurance and other costs. You may need to get permission from the local council for change of use of the premises but this should not be too difficult if you can show how it will benefit the residents of the area.
This is a very brief outline of what may be possible. If you think you might be able to exploit this idea I can offer basic support (free but limited) or you can use any of my services that may help.
Updated 03/08/2016 DB