Highbury & Islington on top of London’s most resilient retail neighbourhoods

23rd March 2023 | Jack Oliver

Highbury & Islington has been ranked as Greater London’s most resilient retail neighbourhood by real estate advisor Savills.

Fellow North London neighbourhoods Kilburn and Holloway Road came a close second and third.

The study utilised a number of metrics including vacancy rates, footfall, new openings, population growth, and household incomes to determine London’s top 40 markets from Zones 2-6.

Highbury & Islington’s high ranking is thanks to its large population (64% higher than the study average), strong footfall figures and transport links, and a boost from the newly-renovated Angel Central shopping centre, Savills said.

Josh Arnold, commercial research analyst at Savills, said: “Ongoing flexible working arrangements have led to an increase in localised spending as people spend more time in their local neighbourhoods. This is reflected in sales figures and new openings for a number of retailers, with many reporting an uplift in sales vs pre-pandemic for suburban areas, which in turn has influenced expansion plans.”

After Kilburn and Holloway, the remainder of the top 10 is made up of a number of emerging London neighbourhoods, including Dalston, Walthamstow, Finsbury Park, Brixton and Tooting.

The emerging neighbourhoods are supported by an emerging population, as well as a vibrant retail and food and beverage (F&B) mix, with Tooting and Brixton seeing the highest and second highest amount of F&B openings between 2020 and 2022 respectively.

Michael Lockhart, retail director at Savills, said: “While the wider UK retail sector faces significant macro-economic headwinds, suburban and commuter neighbourhoods in Greater London continue to outperform. For retail and F&B occupiers looking for expansion opportunities beyond Central London, there are a number of prosperous markets that are moving up the agenda, particularly as these also tend to benefit from lower occupational costs and therefore may be able to deliver enhanced margins.”


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