Six months after the shutters came down on Woolworths, seven out of ten of its former stores are still empty, a study for The Times has found.

The research highlights the dire conditions in the retail and commercial property industries and will heighten further fears that the shift to out-of-town shopping centres and the rise of internet shopping have left the high street in a state of terminal decline.

The Local Data Company analysed every former Woolworths site in Britain in the first systematic study of its kind since the store group’s collapse. It suggests that the demise of Woolworths has accelerated the degradation of the high street, as discount stores and pound shops take the place of mainstream retailers.

The Times