Vacant shop drop in Ballymena

Editorial image
Editorial image

There has been a steady reduction in the number of vacant shop premises in Ballymena town centre, according to new figures just published.

The figures from Springboard UK, a leading provider of retail performance, appear to confirm that Ballymena’s ground floor units are continuing to see new retail and business ventures.

Ballymena now has over 88 per cent of commerical units occupied.

Alison Moore, Ballymena BID manager commented: “It is good news for Ballymena town centre that the number of vacant premises continues to decrease. Ballymena is an attractive town to do business and we are pleased that the town has below average rates for unoccupied premises in Northern Ireland.

“We have worked hard to promote the town centre and what it has to offer. The Ballymena BID is committed to working with its members. It is important that we support local businesses and retailers and encourage continued investment into the town which will in turn help to improve the overall shopping and visitor experience.”

Ballymena has seen a reduction in the number of empty premises over the past three years when the highest figure recorded was 18.2 per cent in April 2013.

The town reportedly benefited from an increase in footfall towards the end of last year.

The Springboard UK figures show that the vacancy rate in Northern Ireland fell to 14 per cent last month, a figure not seen since before 2011.