While the High Street is suffering from a rise in empty shops, the market for storage units is growing as more online retailers realise they are convenient and cheap places to store their stock. You don’t need to pay council tax; it’s all included in the rent. It gives you the choice, if your business isn’t performing, to give one month’s notice and move on, or you can reduce your space so it gives you nice flexibility.
“The main reason why small firms especially store with us is that we accept deliveries on their behalf,” says Blackburn Store First Manager Andrew Williams. “We sign for and take in the goods into store. They are out and about running their business and don’t waste time awaiting delivery of stock.”
The uniform and clean corridors of the Store First self storage centre in Blackburn, Lancashire are marked by the anonymous outlines of padlocked doors. Behind many are the belongings that people just can’t bring themselves to throw away – often the residue of life-changing moments like death or divorce. Yet in among the stacks of furniture and knick-knacks, a growing number of the storage units play host to a wide range of small businesses. They’re attracted by the flexibility, the short-notice periods and low overheads that characterise the business at Store First Blackburn.