DEMAND for empty shops is at a seven-year high as potential retailers battle it out for spaces in Worthing town centre.
A total of 15 units are under offer, with Burger King the latest big name rumoured to have expressed an interest in opening a store.
Harry Ramsden’s opened on Monday, while Starbucks has lodged a planning application for a unit in South Street.
The level of interest in vacant shops is at a high not seen for years, according to town centre manager Sharon Clarke.
“Worthing is really on the up at the moment,” she said.
“Retailers are fighting over premises, which we haven’t seen in six or seven years.
Cocktail bar Rocking Horse, in Brighton Road, opened last Wednesday and had to turn people away because it was so busy.
Owner and experienced mixologist Igor Beaulieu is already considering a second bar, or expansion.
He said: “It was very successful and because we focus on quality, it takes a while to make the drinks. It was so busy, we were turning people away.
“I will be taking on another apprentice and bartender and if possible, we will look at expanding.
“We offer something new in Worthing and there isn’t anything similar, so we thought we would be busy.”
For the full story, see the Herald, out Thursday, August 7.