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Yeh I meant 2100, dunno why I wrote 0900 but oh well. The average pay is 63p per day. The range is from about 17p up to quite alot (obviously not everyone is poor in the 3rd world, just as not everyone is rich in the 1st world). I haven't bought (aka me- not stuff I eat which other people have bought) anything that hasn't been fairtrade this year- yay. There isn't much choice in clothes though, unfourtanetley- but there is for food so people should try and buy that.
 

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It takes some work, but when you do find something good in a charity shop it makes it all worthwhile. There's plenty around Leeds, and I find the big city shops tend to get the better stuff I've found (The 3 in my town are all grandma gardigans and jigsaws)

I've heard the Oxfam in Leeds has got ridiculously exspensive though (A friend saw a jacket for sale at £20)
 

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dgnr8 said:
Get your clobber from charity shops. Granted, it was being £1500 in the red that lead me to Oxfam but I've not gone back to anywhere else since.
You're a student right degenerate? It's amazing how many students spend hundreds of pounds on the "Oxfam look" by visiting trendy shops and not Oxfam! Good to hear that students like yourself still value it - Can you still get shoes these days in Oxfam?
 

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I agree that chain shops have the muscle to innovate, but the irony is that their success leads to stagnation purely as a result of corporate greed and the lack of constraint... this pattern can be found anywhere eg Microsoft, Intel and the motor industry... we shouldnt lick their arses and pretend to be thankful when we know that something is wrong, after all this is our urban environment we are talking about. Look how Starbucks spreads like rape seed often running at a loss to decimate the local competition, this just should not be allowed to occur. Look at how developers build and own premises in key urban locations that are only accessible to National high street chains. There just needs to be some sensible balance... planners could insist that a chain store with x number of shops per county should subsidise retail units for people to run THEIR OWN retail business in prime positions in our town centres. This could also have a side-effect of promoting further re-development outside of the immediate core.

Also the planning system really needs to devolve and give more power to local authorities so that schemes like the one mentioned above can be trialled and tested to fit local environments.
 

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Charity shops are a sign that a city / town is sruggling.

Charity shops take up units that cannot be let - they don't pay rent, and only take up these locations if no one else will.

Round where I live in Sale, Manchester got loads off them just after the Traffic Centre opened - however, as the shopping area has bounced back, the number of charity shops has declined dramatically.
 

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Brighton has 5 subways within 10 minutes of each other.
It's been an issue for a few years - Bill Bryson rants about all towns becoming carbon copies of each other in one of his books about just before he moved back to the usa. I don't see it ending soon, though I wish it would. Towns have to try to nurture the independent retailers, as they do in the North Laine area of Brighton, as it creates a more personalised shopping experience.
 

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The problem we have in our town is the opposite. They've made some efforts to keep the street furniture unique with a pedestrianised high street, black victorian lights, big pots of flowers on the streets, a market twice a week and black council signs that look quite professional and smart. But the shopping is crap because the council and local NIMBYs try to discourage big chainstores so it means the town is full of charity shops. As an example WHSmith opened a small shop and there was a big thing in the local paper about how they were ruining trade in the town even though it was only to stay open over xmas. However there have been a few new chains recently; the biggest Cafe Nero has brought a bit of life back into the centre so chain stores aren't always a bad thing. It is crazy though in places like Oxford St where you get a Starbucks every 30 seconds!
 

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Thats the thing - people complain that the high streets are losing their individuality, but the large chain stores are merely reacting to demand. The sad fact is that often, independent shops don't offer what people want, at a price they can afford - so the supermarkets and chain stores win out everytime.

People like to moan and whinge, but when it comes down to it they are quite happy buying Tesco 9p a tin baked beans like everyone else
 

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Thats the thing - people complain that the high streets are losing their individuality, but the large chain stores are merely reacting to demand. The sad fact is that often, independent shops don't offer what people want, at a price they can afford - so the supermarkets and chain stores win out everytime.

People like to moan and whinge, but when it comes down to it they are quite happy buying Tesco 9p a tin baked beans like everyone else
Absolutely correct.

Anyone complaining about the large chains moving in, don't blame the chains, blame the people. They wouldn't move in if there was no demand for it. It's as simple as that.

This is not just in the UK, but everywhere I have been in the world. Town centers in Germany all have similar chain stores. Same in Australia, same everywhere.

I also like to see smaller individual stores, restaurants etc, and I always visit them first, if their service and product range is what I like, I keep coming back. But sometimes they simply are not up to scratch. Just because they are independent, doesn't mean they are better. Then again, sometimes they are better.

But people shouldn't be forced to use them.
 

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In the past year Shrewsbury's Burger King has closed down and most of the new shops and eateries opening in the town centre have been independents, maybe people are finally getting a bit sick of homogenity?
 

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In the past year Shrewsbury's Burger King has closed down and most of the new shops and eateries opening in the town centre have been independents, maybe people are finally getting a bit sick of homogenity?
The Burger King in Tunbridge Wlls closed down aswell, probably suggests a problem with their franchising setup more than anything.
 

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We are lucky in North London because we have the "Turkish Shop" sometimes with a bakery attached. Makes a change from the supermarket, tins of cheese, buckets of yoghurt, tubs of olives, big vine tomatoes, melons, bunches of herbs and all cheaper than the supermarket too.

And there's loads of them too.
 

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^^ hehe - yeah, North London is where its at - we have the 'Turkish shop' too and even the 'Greek Shop' (no difference whatsoever - just the clientelle ;) ) - and the 'indian post office' which sells asian grub.

They are very cheap and you get some delicious food - but we still use the Supermarkets for the bulk of our shopping
 

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There is no Burger King in Harrogate :D and only one McDonalds. Well. 2 If you include St. James' Retail Park. More of a tea/coffee shop town; Starbucks (Secondary Starbucks @ Sainsburys), 2x Costa, Caffe Nero, Caffe Latino. Apparently Progreso are looking to open too.
 
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