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Manchester ranked top retail centre outside London

Manchester has been named as England’s leading retail centre outside of London in a new report.

Research from Colliers International shows prime high rents in the city rose by around 6% in 2016 with shopping centre rents up by some 8%.

Colliers’ Europe Middle East Africa (EMEA) Retail Market Snapshot 2016 ranks Manchester and London as the key retail hubs in England alongside other market leaders worldwide such as Milan, Madrid, Paris, Dublin, Dubai, Amsterdam and Moscow.

David Fox, head of retail agency North at Colliers, says Manchester benefited from giving consumers a varied and complimentary retail offer to rival that of London, “not in scale but in its range and originality”.

Other key factors cited for the city’s strong performance include the growth in hotels and tourism, investment in infrastructure and meeting the wider needs of a growing population.

Fox says that Manchester continues to face major challenges by offering shoppers more of a retail “experience” in stores and addressing the issue of increasing spending online but the ongoing transformation of the city centre via the regeneration of historic buildings, new office and residential developments and bars and restaurants was helping to capture spend.

He adds: “As this process of diversification continues the years ahead should demonstrate strong returns for those investors who share the vision to innovate as Manchester evolves – consumer spending will match development growth and put the ‘r’ into etailing.”