Positive outlook for Skegness economy

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Business leaders in Skegness have, for once, reported a positive outlook on the town’s economic fortunes.

After months of shop closures, low growth and poor economic prospects, Skegness and District Chamber of Commerce believes the tide is finally turning.

Malcolm Brown, reporting on the economy, said: “I think business will be good for the future, trade will grow, output will rise and profits too.”

The East Midlands’ engineering sector received a particularly encouraging forecast, with Mr Brown saying it was going from ‘strength to strength’.

His only concern for future growth in that sector was a lack of trained professionals, particularly welders, which he felt was due to a ‘problem in further education’ and under-skilled foreign labour.

A recent report on shop vacancy rates in Skegness has supported these positive murmurs. Only 2.1 per cent of the town’s ground floor units were vacant when inspected in April, compared with a national average of 12 per cent.

David Fisher’s report on commercial property rentals also revealed a ‘slight upturn’ in tenants expressing an interest in taking on new premises.

However, most were looking for small units, of which there are now few left.

“There are positive things happening in terms of rentals and keeping people employed but underneath there are still a lot of units that people can’t get rid of and there will be for some time,” said Mr Fisher.