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One thing that I have really started to notice when visiting different towns in the uk is how they are all begining to look the same. They are becoming cloned. Its not so much the big cities but rather the smaller provincial cities and towns, you know the same shops selling the same things, the same street furniture and that crappy cheap looking red brick paving they like to use everywhere in the pedestianised zones...usually covered in chewing gum.Go to most towns centres and this is what you'll find...I think it is very depressing. The individual characters of towns is being sucked away, greedy chain stores forcing smaller private shops into oblivion...and dont get me started on food outlets...ie starfucks and subway seem to be everywhere..where have the friendy characterful coffee houses gone?All the people seem to look the same in these town centres too...usually chavs in addidas trackies.Thank god our largest cities are trying to aviod going down this route ...apart from starfucks they seem to be everywhere!
 

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Yep - it's pretty sad. There are a lot of smaller, independant shops inthe more picturesque towns, but many mid sized towns just look the same these days. There's not enough money there for buildings of any individual note, and all the shops are justchain stores.

A bit depressing really.
 

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Blunther said:
Yep - it's pretty sad. There are a lot of smaller, independant shops inthe more picturesque towns, but many mid sized towns just look the same these days. There's not enough money there for buildings of any individual note, and all the shops are justchain stores.

A bit depressing really.
i was in california three weeks ago, the same situation is even more pronounced there in small towns, every street has the exact same shops and "restaurants", individual stores are pushed into the periphery, literally on what we would call industrial estates. the architecture is the same identikit prefabs wherever you go. this is the way the UK is heading, better get used to it.
 

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caw123 said:
I can't stand the number of Starbucks and Subways we have here in Manc, turning into an epidemic.
in newcastle city centre there are 5 subways all in 10 minutes walking distance of each other. there are plenty of high quality independent sandwich shops in newcastle but i can see them struggling against a poor quality but cheap multinational who can undercut their prices. people are sheep, the power of the market is no good for people who want something a bit different or a bit better or a bit unique.
 

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Bloody capitalists, nothing i sacred anymore!

I always try to buy from small businesses, most of whom are struggling to survive. Much prefer to get a sandwich from a local shop than subway or mcdonalds, its nice to be recognised and greeted rather than treated like every other customer. You don't get the personal touch in starbucks or anywhere like that. I love the way the trendies and yuppie types worship these places though and think that because they're carrying a starbucks cup around they're cultured and far superior to anyone else. Mugs (Or should that be paper cups...). They don't realise they can get good quality stuff from independant shops for the same price, or even less!

Go to Middlesbrough, Derby, Lincoln, Leicester, Sunderland and there isn't much difference between them - not in the main shopping streets anyway. Cheap, short term planning marking out pedestrian areas with the same materials. Its depressing :bash: Out of town retail parks are the same and should all be bombed, they have a lot to answer for in making our medium towns totally crap and soulless, any planner who has given the go ahead for any retail park or out of town leisure complex should be tied up and beaten with sticks until they agree to single handedly knock down the prefabs owned by Comet, JJB, DFS, Mothercare, Boots, HMV, Dixons, Halfords etc

Our towns and cities are becoming homogenised, in fact, the human race is. One day we'll all speak the same language and look the same! It stinks.
 

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I think the town centres though have vastly improved under Labour though- you can see massive differences between them now and when conservative were in. In general they're better now. There are alot of the usual chain shops but I don't think centre shave lost character- if you look theres still individuality to be found, maybe more obvious in cities (e.g Corn Exchange, Kirkgate Market) but not missed in towns.
 

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Subway sandwiches are delicious. Thats all I care about when I go there. If they werent any good people would stop frequenting these places - simple. Why get precious about it?
 

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Shrewsbury town centre seems to be doing well in this regard at the moment for a smallish town (about 70,000 pop). The big chain shops are mostly located in the two shopping centres and one street in the town as well as a couple of out of town retail parks. The rest of the town centre is pretty much all independent shops, musical instrument shops, wine merchants, clothing and footwear, organic food and delicatessans, furniture and antique shops, cafes and restaurants etc.

























 

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Discussion Starter · #11 · (Edited)
MIDGEBLACKANDWHITE said:
Subway sandwiches are delicious. Thats all I care about when I go there. If they werent any good people would stop frequenting these places - simple. Why get precious about it?
To be honest I haven't bought anything from subways but I dont think its a good thing that these outlets are starting to monopolise our town and city centres at the expense of smaller and (probably) better quality independant businesses.The other point I was making is how most town centres all look the same with that black and gold street furniture and cheap red brick paving....do they all use the same people to design these parts of the town centres...mainly the pedestrianised areas as theres no character or origanality , maybee some places may have kept their distinctivness like Shrewsbury as someone says but to me its getting worse and its something I dont notice when in Europe.Does anyone know if subway are American...wouldn't surprise me
 

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oscar9 said:
To be honest I haven't bought anything from subways but I dont think its a good thing that these outlets are starting to monopolise our town and city centres at the expense of smaller and (probably) better quality independant businesses.The other point I was making is how most town centres all look the same with that black and gold street furniture and cheap red brick paving....do they all use the same people to design these parts of the town centres...mainly the pedestrianised areas as theres no character or origanality , maybee some places may have kept their distinctivness like Shrewsbury as someone says but to me its getting worse and its something I dont notice when in Europe.Does anyone know if subway are American...wouldn't surprise me
Yes Subway are American, many European countries also have national chains that dominate town centres but if you're not familiar with them they probably don't look so monotonous.
 

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I don't think the situation has got any worse in the last 5 years or so- it has got any better either though.

I was walking around worster the other day - and away from the Cathedral and river and all that nice stuff I thought it was odd how much soem of the town centre reminds me of Wolverhampton

Starbucks and the mobiel phoen shops exploded everyhwere and then died back a little -I expect subway will too.
 

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Jonesy55 said:
Yes Subway are American, many European countries also have national chains that dominate town centres but if you're not familiar with them they probably don't look so monotonous.
I'm Argentine and we've got some American chains which are concentrated on our downtowns. In my opinion a few are good but a lot can take away Country's distinctness. Anyway we've got restaurant chain with our sort of style.

.: tUriK :.
 

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Ive only ever seen 1 subway in my life, and that was in Turo.


But funny you brought this up.

A few weeks ago there was an article in our Local paper about clone towns, and my town was in the Non-Clone section.

Ive since thrown it away, It was an interessting read.
 
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