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Is anywhere else any better, really?

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Tazi Hupefi

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As someone from a mix of ethnicities and able to trace family members across the world, I like to think I have quite an objective view as to whether a country is a "good" place or a "bad" place to live.

Because of various skills and a good level of income, I qualify for Belize residency which I enjoy, but I am in no doubt that Belize as a country for "ordinary" people is a very different experience. It was always just the place I occasionally did business, or spent my free time when I needed a break from my usual life.

I struggle to see any real benefit to living in the UK, and think it can only continue to decline. On a local level, amenities and facilities are becoming increasingly run down (or closed down), the condition of roads and other key infrastructure is in real, serious decay, and this (broadly) seems to play out across England at least, despite pledges of £billions being made available for such things. Our council taxes are rising well above inflation and cost of living, supposedly to fund things like additional policing and social care. Our income taxes are effectively rising because of the tax thresholds remaining static for some years into the future, supposedly to pay for Coronavirus.

Our legal system has been decimated, and is becoming increasingly neutralised, and from first hand experience, it's causing the collapse of our legal services. Whether it's the deep, deep cuts to physical court infrastructure, a judicial recruitment crisis or the hand of the government in making increasingly strange laws, increasing sentence levels despite knowing there's no realistic possibility of it ever being used, and more recently, an obvious attempt to neuter the judicial review process.

Rents are high, houses are overpriced. Town, and now city centres are obliterated. Even the retail parks on the outskirts are becoming derelict. Life is expensive, but is it enjoyable? Even outside of Coronavirus, are our lives really that good? Discontent is starting to bubble over, not just from Covid, but underlying social and economic issues going back many years have never been resolved, and merely glossed over. I say, with some confidence, that by the end of 2021, the UK will be in severe civil unrest, ordinary, everyday people, from any end of the political spectrum or class hierarchy are feeling increasingly disillusioned. They may be disillusioned about different things, but the net outcome is still going to be the same. Recent events in Bristol and London are just a taste. People are increasingly realising that the police are actually quite weak, Bristol required resources from two separate police forces to bring it under control, and that was just a few hundred people in the end, with a net result that a police station got smashed up, and the loss of a couple of vehicles. People are awakening to the fact that it is not the police or government which actually hold the power.

I now look at Belize as a place I can "escape" to, almost exile to, not just as a place to relax and conduct international business. I don't think it's really much better at all, underneath, and there is serious inequality, but I would contend that it is still preferable to remaining in the UK, where there is not even any real attempt to even disguise the inequality anymore and I am having to contribute an increasingly large amount of my income in a vein attempt to somehow reverse the decline of the country.

Many won't be able to do the same thing, and have a "Plan B" country - but my question for you all is, outside of the UK, is the world any better? Have some countries got it right? Are some countries making enhancements to key areas of life that are being eroded in the UK?

COVID has just sped everything up in my opinion. The decline of the economy, of our infrastructure, of our lifestyles, the increasing restrictions on our lives, the need to hand over more of our income, and government neutralising anything and anyone that poses a threat to its existence or power. We'd have still reached this point even without a pandemic, just would have taken a decade longer.

Just because we aren't being blown up in Syria, or facing true poverty as in parts of Africa, does not mean that our own issues in the UK are somehow negated.
 
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alex397

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I’d certainly like a “plan B” country, and I regret not taking opportunities which could have led to me living abroad.

The UK is a great country, and I don’t think I’m a “traitor” for wanting to live somewhere else.
I feel a lot of the great things about this country are being eroded, largely by this current government. I feel our reputation is being severely damaged by our unprofessional government. I’m not just a leftie who hates anything the Tories do. We could have had a far more competent and more centralist Tory government, but not enough people see the whole picture (you have people who think Tories can do no right, and people who think they can do no wrong. It’s too tribal). Divisions are increasing. Our media has too much influence from billionaires and politicians. Our health levels and inequality levels are rather poor.

But I struggle to see many countries doing much better. Look at the frequent civil unrest in France, or the rising far-right in Hungary, as a couple of very brief examples.
I think there are many countries with a more fair society though with less division, better health rates, much better public infrastructure, and a friendlier society. I would say Switzerland and Germany spring to my mind. Of course, they are not perfect and have their own problems, and also share some of our problems (the effects of social media for example).

my comment only scratches the surface of my thoughts on this, so I won’t bore you any more. In summary, this is a great country, but many feel our greatness is being eroded. Moving to another country has now become an attractive idea for me.
 

yorksrob

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I think that the UK has suffered from an element of over-commercialisation and the selling off industry etc that doesn't stand it in good stead. There are also structural issues that will need to be addressed for the benefit of the population rather than the elite - the housing market, a largely UK problem, and the dilution of employment conditions - a more global issue.

In spite of that, the UK is still a wonderful country for going out and about for a walk, or to the pub, on a daytrip, on holiday or to the football etc (when you're allowed to do so). It is home, and for its faults, I have no desire to emigrate. Not at present anyway.
 

Iskra

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Been all over the world. I’ve enjoyed visiting many countries but I wouldn’t want to live in most of them unless I was seriously rich. I have a second home in Italy, it looks nice on the surface, but life there is certainly no better than here in the UK and a month at a time there is plenty.

The grass isn’t always greener and I like life in the UK, it’s a pleasant, fairly moderate country with a rugged beauty, a good level of development, a state safety net and it is generally fairly affordable apart from a few areas.
 

D6130

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My wife and I are fortunate enough to already have a "Plan B" country - Italy, where we have a second home. However, despite its many good points, such as an agreeable climate, friendly people, wonderful food and wine, fascinating railway system, etc., Italy suffers from most of the social, economic and infrastructural malaises that also affect the UK - not to mention a stifling bureaucracy that encourages rampant corruption and mafia-style organised crime. As Iskra says, it's nice to go out for a few weeks - the longest we've spent there in one stay is ten weeks - but it's also nice to get back again to the wind and the rain and nice cosy pub with a roaring log fire.
 

nlogax

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Having lived in different parts of the world for the best part of a decade, when I finally moved back to England I could sense a palpable decline here. Having a plan B seems sensible - but from what I've experienced in recent years moving to another part of the UK will possibly do the job. The idea of living in Scotland full time and maybe leaving London behind for good has really fired up my imagination.
 

Tazi Hupefi

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Having lived in different parts of the world for the best part of a decade, when I finally moved back to England I could sense a palpable decline here. Having a plan B seems sensible - but from what I've experienced in recent years moving to another part of the UK will possibly do the job. The idea of living in Scotland full time and maybe leaving London behind for good has really fired up my imagination.
That is a thought which crossed my mind too.

Given the Common Travel Area, does Wales, Scotland, Northern Ireland or the Republic of Ireland offer the potential for a better life? My initial view is Wales, is "possibly", at least in rural areas. Scotland almost certainly not at the moment given the political instability and certainly appears no better in terms of society until you reach the Highlands and Islands. Ireland, either half of it, I really don't have enough information to form a view.

I exclude IOM and the Channel Islands purely on the basis that residency is not straightforward.

Gibraltar was another thought which crossed my mind as a reasonable alternative.
 

LSWR Cavalier

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New Zealand and Australia seem attractive, same language, even drive on the left. Not sure about the weather down there.
 

WelshBluebird

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Everywhere will have its ups and downs, they may just be different from ours. And there will always be an element of the grass is greener for some people too regardless of where they are at any one time.
 

nlogax

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Given the Common Travel Area, does Wales, Scotland, Northern Ireland or the Republic of Ireland offer the potential for a better life? My initial view is Wales, is "possibly", at least in rural areas. Scotland almost certainly not at the moment given the political instability and certainly appears no better in terms of society until you reach the Highlands and Islands. Ireland, either half of it, I really don't have enough information to form a view.

Being in my mid to late forties means I'm increasingly finding a lot to love about Scotland, in a way that late thirties me wouldn't have done. I currently have the benefit of being able to compare and contrast both ends of the country, and can only assume that balance will continue to tip northwards as my fifties creep up on me like an unwelcome house guest..
 

nlogax

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@nlogax
Please, what do you love about Scotland?

Outside of my personal situation which takes up a fair amount of it, four ones from the top of my head,
  • The geography and the vistas. I increasingly appreciate hills and mountains in my views or at least the ability to be close to them.
  • Something akin to four real seasons
  • The people. I prefer 'fewer and friendlier'. London no longer energizes me in that respect
  • The yawning chasm between the amount of light on winter and summer days
It all adds up. You could argue that you could get most of the above in Yorkshire or the Lake District, but it's just not Scotland.
 

Iskra

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My wife and I are fortunate enough to already have a "Plan B" country - Italy, where we have a second home. However, despite its many good points, such as an agreeable climate, friendly people, wonderful food and wine, fascinating railway system, etc., Italy suffers from most of the social, economic and infrastructural malaises that also affect the UK - not to mention a stifling bureaucracy that encourages rampant corruption and mafia-style organised crime. As Iskra says, it's nice to go out for a few weeks - the longest we've spent there in one stay is ten weeks - but it's also nice to get back again to the wind and the rain and nice cosy pub with a roaring log fire.
The hardest part about being in Italy for long periods of time is it that it is a bit of a 'monoculture,' Italian food is excellent but if you want any other cuisine it's very difficult to find the ingredients for it, let alone find something like an Indian/Chinese takeaway, there's McDonalds and that's it near me. The diet gets a bit monotonous after a while. And I agree about the other down sides too. The laid back attitude to just about everything is nice in some respects, but can be frustrating when you just want to get something done. Of course, I do enjoy my time there, but I'm not sure I'd live there permanently.

Outside of my personal situation which takes up a fair amount of it, four ones from the top of my head,
  • The geography and the vistas. I increasingly appreciate hills and mountains in my views or at least the ability to be close to them.
  • Something akin to four real seasons
  • The people. I prefer 'fewer and friendlier'. London no longer energizes me in that respect
  • The yawning chasm between the amount of light on winter and summer days
It all adds up. You could argue that you could get most of the above in Yorkshire or the Lake District, but it's just not Scotland.
I agree about Scotland, I'm drawn to it too and often think I'd like to move their when I'm older :)
 

21C101

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I think there is an existential issue but it is between large cities and rural/market town areas not between countries.

I have never regretted getting out of London SW couple of decades back. Amazingly despite the commute going from 6 miles to nearer 50 it is all of 5 minutes longer. Public services are far better and there is more space, pleasant walks and much less crime.

I think that Coronavirus, by compressing 20 years drift to home working and shopping to almost overnight is going to cause a repeat of the inner city decay of the post war era with knobs on. London and Edinburgh will weather it to some extent as it is the cultural, governmental, royal and tourism capital but places like Birmingham Glasgow and Leeds,whos centres are largely office farms and shopping centres will get absolutely hammered. Small Cathedral cities with pleasant hinterlands like York and Exeter will overtake them fast in prosperity.

As to last nights events in Bristol. Well, the government couldn't have got a better result if it had paid the demonstrators to do it. The laws clamping down on such activity will sail through now.
 

alex397

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.As to last nights events in Bristol. Well, the government couldn't have got a better result if it had paid the demonstrators to do it. The laws clamping down on such activity will sail through now.
I will quote JFK who said: “Those who make peaceful revolution impossible will make violent revolution inevitable” (from Remarks on the first anniversary of the Alliance for Progress, 13th March 1962).

What the Tories are proposing set a dangerous precedent. One thing that is great about the UK is the freedom to peacefully protest, but this proposed law will make this more difficult.
I do not condone violent protest at all, such as those shown in Bristol last night. But it is not an excuse to tighten up the protest laws. Last night shows how under-resourced the local police were, no doubt not helped by police cutbacks. If more protests are made illegal, good luck policing it unless lots more money is spent on policing.

Also worth mentioning that most of the violent and disruptive behaviour at protests is already illegal, so we don’t need tighter restrictions. Our government just want to restrict the freedoms that have been fought for and developed over decades. This is what concerns me about the direction this country is taking, along with the American-style flag-waving nationalism that seems to be encroaching.

(btw, I’m not saying you’re agreeing with these proposed laws. But your comment just got me thinking about the politics I’m concerned about with this country).
 

Gostav

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I will quote JFK who said: “Those who make peaceful revolution impossible will make violent revolution inevitable” (from Remarks on the first anniversary of the Alliance for Progress, 13th March 1962).

What the Tories are proposing set a dangerous precedent. One thing that is great about the UK is the freedom to peacefully protest, but this proposed law will make this more difficult.
I do not condone violent protest at all, such as those shown in Bristol last night. But it is not an excuse to tighten up the protest laws. Last night shows how under-resourced the local police were, no doubt not helped by police cutbacks. If more protests are made illegal, good luck policing it unless lots more money is spent on policing.

Also worth mentioning that most of the violent and disruptive behaviour at protests is already illegal, so we don’t need tighter restrictions. Our government just want to restrict the freedoms that have been fought for and developed over decades. This is what concerns me about the direction this country is taking, along with the American-style flag-waving nationalism that seems to be encroaching.

(btw, I’m not saying you’re agreeing with these proposed laws. But your comment just got me thinking about the politics I’m concerned about with this country).

l think protests without permits blocked the major street to disrupted the traffic should be a felony, at least for the main participants, that is not "peaceful protest".
 

alex397

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l think protests without permits blocked the major street to disrupted the traffic should be a felony, at least for the main participants, that is not "peaceful protest".
This is already an offence, unless permission has been given.
 

Tazi Hupefi

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l think protests without permits blocked the major street to disrupted the traffic should be a felony, at least for the main participants, that is not "peaceful protest".
A protest, by it's very nature, ought to be disruptive to some extent.

I also think the occasional scuffle with police is actually a good thing, provided it doesn't get out of hand and both sides step back at the appropriate time. Sometimes steam needs to vent. Contrary to the media view, the police do enjoy a trip to the olden days every so often too. For some officers, getting out the batons and shields is a career highlight! Until they don't win the battle anyway.

I don't actually think Bristol was that bad, especially if you consider how rare events like that are. A couple of coppers taking a beating, a van or two being torched etc sounds worse than it is. I'm sure the protesters ultimately came off worse.

The danger is if it sparks similar action across the country, and gets out of hand.
 

D6130

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The hardest part about being in Italy for long periods of time is it that it is a bit of a 'monoculture,' Italian food is excellent but if you want any other cuisine it's very difficult to find the ingredients for it, let alone find something like an Indian/Chinese takeaway, there's McDonalds and that's it near me. The diet gets a bit monotonous after a while. And I agree about the other down sides too. The laid back attitude to just about everything is nice in some respects, but can be frustrating when you just want to get something done. Of course, I do enjoy my time there, but I'm not sure I'd live there permanently.


I agree about Scotland, I'm drawn to it too and often think I'd like to move their when I'm older :)
I take your point about the Italian 'Monoculture', especially with reference to food matters, although things are changing slowly. My first visit to Italy was in 1981 and even that long ago there was quite a selection of international restaurants - mainly Chinese and Japanese - in the larger cities such as Rome, Milan and Turin......but virtually nothing in the smaller provincial cities, towns and villages. Nowadays, I am aware of at least three Indian and four Chinese restaurants (which also do takeaways) in Florence and even a small Indian one near the station in Arezzo, but our last trains home in the evening are at 19 13 from Florence and 20 27 from Arezzo, so to enjoy them fully for an evening meal would entail an overnight stay. Do you mind me asking in which part of Italy your place is located? (If you prefer, we could converse by DM).
 

JohnMcL7

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I live in Scotland and never considered living anywhere else as I've always loved the scenery here and how easily accessible and quiet it is to take the dog for a walk, out on the road bike or on the mountain bike in pretty much every direction. I'm not good in hot weather so the cooler climate suits me well.
 

Iskra

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I take your point about the Italian 'Monoculture', especially with reference to food matters, although things are changing slowly. My first visit to Italy was in 1981 and even that long ago there was quite a selection of international restaurants - mainly Chinese and Japanese - in the larger cities such as Rome, Milan and Turin......but virtually nothing in the smaller provincial cities, towns and villages. Nowadays, I am aware of at least three Indian and four Chinese restaurants (which also do takeaways) in Florence and even a small Indian one near the station in Arezzo, but our last trains home in the evening are at 19 13 from Florence and 20 27 from Arezzo, so to enjoy them fully for an evening meal would entail an overnight stay. Do you mind me asking in which part of Italy your place is located? (If you prefer, we could converse by DM).
Ah, I like Florence. I’m down on the South Coast, the nearest sizeable towns are Gerace and Locri. It’s like a different world that far South compared to the North :D
 

DB

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I think that Coronavirus, by compressing 20 years drift to home working and shopping to almost overnight is going to cause a repeat of the inner city decay of the post war era with knobs on. London and Edinburgh will weather it to some extent as it is the cultural, governmental, royal and tourism capital but places like Birmingham Glasgow and Leeds,whos centres are largely office farms and shopping centres will get absolutely hammered. Small Cathedral cities with pleasant hinterlands like York and Exeter will overtake them fast in prosperity.

Not sure why there is this view that York is a small city (it's often stated) - depending what you include, it's getting up towards 200,000 people. So not Leeds or Sheffield, but by no means a small city. I lived there for years and the city centre has become a lot less diversified than it was a couple of decades ago - any time a business of any type closed, it seemed to become a restaurant or bar. Locals tended to mostly do their shopping in the out of town shopping centres. I'm back there with work often, but I think I've only been into the city centre once in eighteen months.

I think Leeds might actually weather this OK - it will remain the regional capital and the main shopping centre, and I remain unconvinced that working from home is going to remain in favour long-term with the type of legal and financial businesses which are big employers in the city.

It's probably going to be the second-rank cities and large towns which really get hit hardest. It was already noticeable before this - look at the centres of places like Bradford, Hull, Doncaster, Oldham - they are getting quite run-down, with a lot of empty shops. I've been to Sheffield a few times recently, and that's quite noticeably going downhill too - empty shops even in the main shopping streets. Meadowhall didn't do it a lot of good, but up until recently the city centre generally seemed to be doing OK.
 

notlob.divad

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I moved away, have no intention of moving back, certainly not to England. Scotland or maybe Wales would be an option, but more likely i would head to Ireland, if I was to return to the British Isles.

That said if I had free choice for a 2nd move it would be New Zealand, Scandinavia, or maybe the French/Italian Alps.
 

Tazi Hupefi

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I moved away, have no intention of moving back, certainly not to England. Scotland or maybe Wales would be an option, but more likely i would head to Ireland, if I was to return to the British Isles.

That said if I had free choice for a 2nd move it would be New Zealand, Scandinavia, or maybe the French/Italian Alps.
Where did you move away to? And was the grass greener?
 

Strathclyder

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I have no intention of uprooting myself anytime soon (not that I could right now for obvious reasons, even if I had the means & will to do so), but if (and that's a very big if!), in the distant future, I am able to upsticks and move country, Sweden, the Netherlands, Ireland, Canada and New Zealand (much as I love Australia, the climate would, for want of a better phrase, do me in) would be among my choices.

Failing a shift to another country, I'd likely move within Scotland up to either the west highlands or the north-eastern coast. Have holidayed in both regions several times over the years, and have really taken a liking to the latter over 3 seperate holidays in Moray (2017 thru to 2019).

But as it stands now, I'm fairly comfortable where I am: in a post-industrial town roughly 8 miles west of Glasgow. One can point out it's flaws/drawbacks to their heart's content (most of which, given I've lived here for most of my near 25 years, I'm acutely aware of) but it's home to me, and that overrides most negative qualities it has. Family also has it's roots firmly planted here (my parents were living in Stevenage which is where they had me. Moved back up north soon after, so you'd have no clue I was born in Hertfordshire from the accent alone lol), so that has a significant bearing on matters. But I'm starting to ramble, so I'll stop now lol

TL;DR - I've no intention of uprooting myself, but who knows what the future holds?
 
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alex397

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It's probably going to be the second-rank cities and large towns which really get hit hardest. It was already noticeable before this - look at the centres of places like Bradford, Hull, Doncaster, Oldham - they are getting quite run-down, with a lot of empty shops. I've been to Sheffield a few times recently, and that's quite noticeably going downhill too - empty shops even in the main shopping streets. Meadowhall didn't do it a lot of good, but up until recently the city centre generally seemed to be doing OK.
With run down town and city centres, I wonder if this is quite a British thing when compared to the rest of the continent.

The last German city I went to was Aachen in 2019, which has a population of 246,000 (though no doubt attracts many more from a larger catchment area). The centre was really thriving, with busy shops and not really any noticeable empty shops. It was quite a big shopping area too across many streets. This felt like a contrast to many UK towns and cities, with their various empty shops, or charity, betting, vape shops or nail bars.

I’m not sure how Germany and other countries are different in still having thriving town/city centres as they must surely also have online shopping and out-of-town supermarkets and so on. However looking at Aachen, there doesn’t seem to be any significant out-of-town shopping, apart from supermarkets and small stores, as well as light industry and specialist shops.
Obviously I’m sure there are exceptions on the continent, but that isn’t the general feel I get when visiting various towns and cities. Some Eastern European cities are very quiet with closed shops but the obvious reason for that is probably a decreasing population as people move west. But the UK certainly doesn’t have the excuse of a decreasing population.

This isn’t just in ‘economically deprived’ areas either of the UK, but in the South East too. Have a visit to Canterbury, where even before Covid and Brexit there are a lot of empty shops. Most of the shops around the tourist hotspot of the square by the main Cathedral entrance are empty or are tacky London souvenir shops. Canterbury was popular with foreign tourists, particularly school groups, so I hope the post-Covid and Brexit fallout won’t have too much of a dramatic effect!
If an historic university city (more the size of a large town) in one of the most densely populated regions of Europe (SE England) is getting rather run down, it shows the UK needs to change if it is to avoid completely desolate centres like you see in the US.
 
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nlogax

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If a historic university city (more the size of a large town) in the one of the most densely populated regions of Europe (SE England) is getting rather run down, it shows the UK needs to change if it is to avoid completely desolate centres like you see in the US.

I do wonder how the twin madnesses of Brexit and Covid will affect the long term futures of town and city centres.. my guess remains that as property prices fall and property owners determine how to maintain a positive balance sheet with their assets we'll start to see residents drift back in to fill the commercial voids. Who knows, maybe this mess will turn out to be beneficial in the long term? Central London may become affordable as a place to live, similar to Berlin.

Back on topic, the financial blight seen in our town centres is something seen right across the UK. Central areas in Scotland, Wales and NI are definitely succumbing to the same fate. If 'somewhere better' includes a thriving central town or city district I don't see any alternative other than to completely vacate this country for the next few years at least.
 

yorksrob

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With run down town and city centres, I wonder if this is quite a British thing when compared to the rest of the continent.

The last German city I went to was Aachen in 2019, which has a population of 246,000 (though no doubt attracts many more from a larger catchment area). The centre was really thriving, with busy shops and not really any noticeable empty shops. It was quite a big shopping area too across many streets. This felt like a contrast to many UK towns and cities, with their various empty shops, or charity, betting, vape shops or nail bars.

I’m not sure how Germany and other countries are different in still having thriving town/city centres as they must surely also have online shopping and out-of-town supermarkets and so on. However looking at Aachen, there doesn’t seem to be any significant out-of-town shopping, apart from supermarkets and small stores, as well as light industry and specialist shops.
Obviously I’m sure there are exceptions on the continent, but that isn’t the general feel I get when visiting various towns and cities. Some Eastern European cities are very quiet with closed shops but the obvious reason for that is probably a decreasing population as people move west. But the UK certainly doesn’t have the excuse of a decreasing population.

This isn’t just in ‘economically deprived’ areas either of the UK, but in the South East too. Have a visit to Canterbury, where even before Covid and Brexit there are a lot of empty shops. Most of the shops around the tourist hotspot of the square by the main Cathedral entrance are empty or are tacky London souvenir shops. Canterbury was popular with foreign tourists, particularly school groups, so I hope the post-Covid and Brexit fallout won’t have too much of a dramatic effect!
If an historic university city (more the size of a large town) in the one of the most densely populated regions of Europe (SE England) is getting rather run down, it shows the UK needs to change if it is to avoid completely desolate centres like you see in the US.

I must admit, Canterbury always seems like one of the more bustling centres in the South East. I generally pay it a visit when visiting the family.

I agree that a lot of town centres seem to be struggling. There needs to be change to taxation laws amongst other things to make them competitive.
 

WelshBluebird

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In terms of city centres especially, part of the problem is increased competition within itself too.
You see it quite often where there's a perfectly good shopping centre already in existence that may just need a little sprucing up, but instead a new shopping centre is built close by and all of the core retailers move to the new one, leaving the one a shadow of its former self with empty units and lower brow retailers.

Bristol is a good example of this (The Galleries is really suffering now thanks to Cabot Circus, and is apparently going to be "redeveloped" over the coming years.
You've seen it in Cardiff too with the Capitol Centre, although the last time I passed through they seemed to have got a gym and a cinema in place now so maybe have cottoned onto something there. And still in Cardiff, the only reason Queens Arcade and the existing St Davids centre didn't suffer the same fate when St Davids 2 was built is that they are all directly connected so each one just feels like an extension of the other rather than a whole new shopping centre.
 
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