Shops take the spoils in the Internet v High Street war

Sheryl Deakin  shops locally and never uses the Internet. SG030913-342NG
Sheryl Deakin shops locally and never uses the Internet. SG030913-342NG

Half of all high street chains are at “serious risk of failure” – and two thirds of independents are struggling for survival.

Online shopping, “unfair” business rates and expensive parking are blamed for the weakening of the High Street in a new report.

But Spalding’s shoppers are bucking the trend – with most going to shops rather than ordering online.

Mum of two Sheryl Deakin (32) shops on her doorstep at Gosberton Co-op for daily essentials, Aldi for her supermarket shop and buys clothes in New Look and Dorothy Perkins.

She said: “I never go online because I just don’t think it’s fair to the town shops – it’s putting them out of business.”

Since Burton’s closed, Gary Creasey (52), from Spalding, goes online for clothes but uses butchers, greengrocers and supermarkets locally.

“I shop locally,” said Chris Phillips (51), from Spalding. “I suppose it’s just the convenience of not having to drive a 40 mile round trip to Peterborough. It’s a good thing to support local businesses.”

Chris does her supermarket shopping herself rather than ordering online.

She said: “I did it once and the food all came with short dates. I never ever have done it again.”

Spalding mum Ruth Taplin (52) “very rarely” shops on the Internet and when she does it’s for books, DVDs and CDs.

She and daughter Charlie (26) bargain hunt for designer clothes in the town’s charity shops.

Ruth said: “I got a beautiful Laura Ashley dress and we find brand new clothes with the tags still on.”

She too abandoned Internet grocery shopping because of “short dates and substitutes”.

Mum Zoe Dean (32) goes 50/50 on her clothes shopping – using Next online and visiting Peacocks.

She said: “I don’t do food shopping online because I like Aldi.”

Jason Bishop (43), in Spalding for a day out, also supports town centres, loves W H Smith and Boots, and prefers speaking to experts in shops when buying anything technical.