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  • Gareth Ellis

Blogmas 2017 Day 2 – Death of the High Street

Christmas shopping used to be something I really loved.

I weirdly love the crowds, despite hating how slow people walk at any other time of the year and I love all of the decorations. The best part of it is I just love buying presents for people.

The problem is it’s just so easy to shop online now as opposed to visiting the high street. What with the rise of companies who can deliver the next day, or Argos, who can deliver the same day – in a matter of hours.

When I was growing up if you wanted something in four hours you had to get on the bus, go to the shop, look around for three hours and then buy it at the first shop – four hours after you started. Tedious yet oddly brilliant.

When you don’t go out and find a Christmas present you don’t get that sense of achievement. You just arrive home to a note through the door, or a box on your doorstep labelled ‘fragile’ that was definitely thrown down there.

It just seems a bit soulless. However, that’s the way of the world nowadays, we would rather go for convenience than actually go to the shops and pick things out.

I’m a nervous shopper as it is, so I would much rather go to a physical shop and look at something and check that it looks right than look at it online.

Times have changed though. We live in a world of instant gratification, where we want everything fast and with minimal fuss. Gone are the days of putting in any effort.

But what does that mean in shopping terms for our high street? A walk down any town’s promenade of stores will see the same thing – closed shops that are boarded up or a heavy mix of the same old, same old. Wall to wall charity shops, restaurants and a revolving door of failed, far too niche business ventures.

I went back to Farnham recently (the town where I went to university) and was shocked to see how times had changed with shops closed, pubs boarded up and even the Peacocks had gone (of course I’m kidding, Peacocks is shit.)

Everything goes in cycles though so I’m sure we’ll be back on the high street soon. Jamie Oliver or some other tosser will be bleating about how important they are compared to the likes of Amazon and co. Then slowly we’ll revert back online, finish our shopping and then head down to that new boutique shop – only to see it’s closed down one week after opening.

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