Storm blasts hole in sales for businesses in Beckton Triangle retail park
PUBLISHED: 12:48 07 January 2014 | UPDATED: 13:07 07 January 2014
Hundreds of thousands of pounds in takings have been lost by businesses at a Beckton retail park which has been closed since before Christmas because of storm damage.
Twelve stores at Beckton Triangle Retail Park missed out on what should have been their busiest trading period of the year after high winds brought a 40 foot canopy over the entrance of one of the stores crashing down into the car park two days before Christmas.
Big chain stores – including Curry’s, PC World, Next, DFS, Paul Simon and others – were told they could not open until the canopies and structure of the buildings had undergone thorough safety checks which will not be completed until the end of this week.
Some staff at the park’s stores have been relocated to nearby branches for work.
Jones Lang Lasalle, the park’s management agency, said they have no plans to compensate the businesses, which it expects will rely on insurance to make up for the lost revenue.
A spokesman said: “Triangle Retail Park, Beckton, has been closed following the collapse of a large canopy structure due to high winds.
“Clearance of the collapsed structure and works to ensure structural integrity of the remaining canopies is in progress and will be completed as quickly as possible.”
He added that the park will reopen fully by January 10, unless there are delays due to weather conditions during the work.
Curry’s, PC World, Next and other companies refused to comment on lost revenue, saying they “do not release that information”.
The overall number of shoppers was up this year from last year, according to John James, executive secretary of the Newham Chamber of Commerce.
Springboard, which monitors “footfall”, or the number of people entering shops, said retail parks and shopping centres saw a rise in visitors on key sale days like Boxing Day this year, while high street sales dropped.
Diane Wehrle, marketing director at Springboard, said: “The footfall shows that people have headed out early – the Boxing Day sales are always a big event and people know to get out first thing and queue in order to find the best deals.
“The fact that shopping centres and retail parks are still up reflects the less onerous parking tariff that often deters shoppers from town centres.”