It brought back so many memories of the stores that have gone.
Personally, I used to love Watt & Grant, especially its bookshop. A walk up George Street was always a pleasure – visiting the likes of The Rubber Shop and Maxwells.
The rise of online shopping is, of course, affecting every city up and down the country, not only Aberdeen. However, I think there are other factors that have contributed to the decline of Union Street.
This great street also used to be a mecca for cinemagoers – I always remember the What’s On page in the EE listing the current films on at the Gaumont, the Majestic, Capitol, ABC, Queens and so on. Today there is not a single cinema on the main street if we accept that the Vue’s main door is on Shiprow.
There have also been fewer students in the city centre given that Aberdeen University and RGU have moved their whole campuses to Old Aberdeen and Garthdee respectively.
I totally agree with the points made by Moreen regarding the planning decisions made in the past, certainly the Bon Accord Centre just over 30 years ago and Union Square more recently, which have taken much of the footfall away from the main street.
The people charged with revitalising the city centre have a massive job in front of them post-pandemic. A key aspect must be to get more people back staying in the city centre, to occupy all these empty properties above street level.
All in all an excellent and thought-provoking article from Moreen.
Billy Noble, Peterhead.
Re the closure of Aberdeen’s Disney store, it’s so sad. There’s nothing left in Bon Accord. It was by far the best shopping centre in Aberdeen, such a shame it’s practically empty.
To physically visit a big franchise or department store will soon involve a trip to Edinburgh/Glasgow.
Union Street and surrounding shopping areas are already in dire straits. Dread to think the state of play just before Christmas time.
Regarding Tommy Hilfiger opening a store in Aberdeen.
It should be seen as a positive for Aberdeen that a brand is viewing Aberdeen as worthy of investing in. Here’s hoping we see a rejuvenation of our city.