63% increase in Welwyn Hatfield beauty businesses
PUBLISHED: 13:05 26 September 2018 | UPDATED: 13:05 26 September 2018
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The beauty industry is booming in Welwyn Hatfield and Hertsmere.
Since 2010 the number of hairdressers, barbers and nail bars in Welwyn Hatfield has risen from 40 to 65. That’s an increase of 63 per cent.
In Hertsmere, the rise has been from 50 to 85, an increase of 70 per cent.
Retail specialists say the trend is likely to continue as consumers seek to treat themselves to an experience rather than buy an item on the high street.
Over recent months many familiar high street names have disappeared from UK towns.
Most recently, Welwyn Garden City has seen Trespass close its store in Howardsgate.
Men’s designer clothes shop Tabrizi in Wigmores North, Welwyn Garden City, is also closing down.
In Potters Bar, Carpetright is closing at the end of the month.
Among the latest arrivals in Welwyn Garden City is The Salon, which does hair and beauty and is based near The Two Willows.
While retailers are being hit by the shift to online shopping, businesses that provide services are proving more resilient.
Across the UK the number of beauty treatment salons has rocketed from nearly 27,000 in 2010 to 43,000 in 2017, according to a register of UK businesses produced by the Office for National Statistics.
The number of beauty treatment businesses has gone up in all but seven of the 391 local authorities in the UK.
The number has more than doubled in 50 local authority areas.
In Newham it has nearly quadrupled.
An independent review of the high street in July identified this shift on most high streets.
It said: “The traditional anchors of many town centres such as banks, clothing shops and pubs have been closing hundreds of outlets and in the case of banks nearly 2,500.
“Where these shops have been taken over, they are being filled by health and beauty businesses – nail salons, tattoo parlours and barbers – all offering experiences rather than just products.”
The report’s author, former boss of Iceland and Wickes Bill Grimsey, explained: “Nail bars, hairdressers, even spas on the high street are experiential, so they are growing.
“They are taking on some of the commercial space that is vacant. It is growing at the moment, and with more and more opening across the country it is yet to reach a consolidation point.”
But a tipping point may have been reached in Welwyn Hatfield as the most recent records show that between 2016 and 2017 the number of beauty businesses was unchanged.