Brent Cross, which has influenced the shopping habits of a generation since opening in 1976, has been knocked off a list of top 10 shopping centres because of two developments which opened in 1997.

The list, which is compiled by Going Shopping, a joint publication of TW Research Associations and Weatherall Green & Smith, asks 600 agents, retailers, investors and shoppers to rank 400 shopping centres in order of attractiveness.

After awarding points for size, environment, parking and variety, Brent Cross in north London scored 4,161. The Mall at Cribbs Causeway, which opened in Bristol in March comes in at number 10 with a score of 4,498.

The leader, the MetroCentre, Gateshead, remains unchanged with 7,216 points. The others in the top ten are: Lakeside, Thurrock (7,147); Meadowhall, Sheffield (6,285); Merry Hill, Dudley (6,049); Trafford Centre, Manchester which opened in September (5,994); Milton Keynes (5,603); Arndale, Manchester (4,944); Eldon Square, Newcastle (4,717); The Harlequin, Watford (4,637).

The fall of Brent Cross must be all the more galling for the owners, Standard Life and Hammerson, because their attempt to build a new Marks & Spencer in the development, thus releasing the old store for other retailers, has been called in by the Secretary of State for the Environment, Transport & the Regions.

The MetroCentre was not tipped from its number one slot, despite the fact that the building of a new Debenhams there will be the subject of a public inquiry next month.

Trevor Wood of TW Research, predicts that Milton Keynes could emerge as the largest shopping centre in Europe when new development, mainly by London & Amsterdam, adds 40,000 sq m (430,000 sq ft). The combined schemes will be nearly 185,800 sq m (2m sq ft).

Weatherall's research director, Keith Steventon, forecasts that further changes will be made when Bluewater, Braehead and the Buchanan Galleries open this year.

Separate research carried out by Management Horizons, which bases its rankings on the number and quality of shops (for example 15 points for Selfridges, 4 for Bhs and 1 for Dorothy Perkins), already anticipates the opening of Bluewater.

Although the regional shopping centre in Dartford does not open until March, its lettings have enabled it to come top with 225 points, compared with the runner-up, Lakeside, at 187 points.

Helped by 15 points for attracting Selfridges, the Trafford Centre comes in at number 4, with 161 points, after Meadowhall which scored 186.

Management Horizons slots in Brent Cross at number 8 with 118 points. But again it is overtaken by The Mall at Cribbs Causeway which scored 122.

'No single existing mega-mall makes it into the top 20 at present,' reported Management Horizons of retail areas generally. The company gave the West End of London 630 points, compared with 385 for Glasgow, the runner up.