On the button

photoBurton and Dorothy Perkins were among many brands to leave Broad Street and head for the Oracle when it opened in 1999.

Odd then, that 15 years on they appear to be doing the reverse with this shop opening on the corner of Broad Street and Chain Street.

There may be advantages to the business, not least that it can have shorter opening hours and lower rent, but it illustrates that while Friar Street died a death when the Oracle opened, Broad Street never lost its appeal.

This move, however, may just be a very clever one. One of the revelations when the Oracle opened was how many people use the Holybrook entrance. It was far more than expected.

By opening at this mid point, the new shop can pick up the Broad Street footfall along with those heading for the Oracle. That’s the theory anyway. The nagging doubt has to be why previous shops there didn’t last. And why Chain Street units have been slow to fill.

Whether it succeeds or fails Burtons/Miss Selfridge will be worth watching.

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About Alan Bunce

Freelance journalist Former Community Editor with the Reading Post. Former Business Editor with the Reading Chronicle.
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