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Photos of Wigan
Photos of Wigan

Photo-a-Day Archive
Photo-a-Day Archive

Photo-a-Day  (Sunday, 11th September, 2022)

Bottom of Makinsons Arcade

Bottom of Makinsons Arcade
So what comes next ?

Photo: Dennis Seddon  (Sony DSC-WX500)
Views: 1,840

Comment by: Veronica on 11th September 2022 at 05:52

It’s becoming more and more like Shanty Town….it seems if posters are put over empty shop windows they won’t look so bad…. Wrong! They still look sad and they are still empty.

Comment by: Wigan Mick on 11th September 2022 at 06:12

That finger post sign would make a nice garden feature for anybody who is Wigan mad.

Comment by: Helen of Troy on 11th September 2022 at 07:12

Surely no one in their right mind would touch the Makinson Arcade ? As for 'what next' Dennis , plans must be able to be seen at council offices by people who live in Wigan ?

Comment by: irene roberts on 11th September 2022 at 07:37

What a crying shame.....an absolute waste!

Comment by: PeterP on 11th September 2022 at 07:50

What happens to the ornate clock and the fancy lamp posts and other fixtures and fittings???? Are they all scrapped or repurposed elsewhere?

Comment by: freddie on 11th September 2022 at 08:19

all that lovely brickwork and features all to be replaced by featureless concrete and glass. The developers have only one interest ££ and I wonder what is driving this through the council?

Comment by: Dennis Seddon on 11th September 2022 at 08:42

There are plans Helen, but everything seems to have ground to a halt. All the shops are empty and the area is turning into yet another scene of dereliction in the town centre.

Comment by: Edna on 11th September 2022 at 08:48

What comes next? Housing, cinema, and hospitality.What about shop's?

Comment by: irene roberts on 11th September 2022 at 09:11

Helen, the photo is taken from the bottom of The Makinson Arcade, where Makinson's Coffee Shop once was, and the camera is looking across what was once Woodcock Street. The Arcade itself won't be touched but goodness knows how its shops will fare, as Wigan is like a ghost town at the moment and will get worse before it gets better, (IF it gets better!). Rents and electricity still have to be paid by shopkeepers whether or not they have any customers. It's all so sad.

Comment by: Wigan Mick on 11th September 2022 at 09:18

Historical Video of Old Wigan


Comment by: Fred on 11th September 2022 at 09:22

Who will want to come to wigan, in a few years there will be a big hotel, around 400 new houses, a bowling alley, a cinema, and a few shops, Wigan as a shopping town is dead.

Comment by: Jean on 11th September 2022 at 11:16

What have our councillors got for brains? A lot of people I know have started shopping in Chorley. Do they really think people will come back to Wigan? Don't get me started on what they've done to Standish!!

Comment by: DerekB on 11th September 2022 at 12:38

Someone remarked to me recently (a Wiganer) that Leigh is better than Wigan nowadays for shopping.

Comment by: Bruce Almighty on 11th September 2022 at 12:56

Have you never thought, that Leigh people shop in Leigh and Chorley people shop in Chorley, so they prosper, whilst Wigan people all shoot of to Costco, the Trafford Centre and Liverpool One and post on Wigan World saying how good Leigh and Chorley are for shopping.
What do you expect?
Wigan area residents have caused the demise of Wigan as a shopping centre.

Comment by: PeterP on 11th September 2022 at 14:47

Bruce Almighty the council caused a lot of the rot in WIgan town centre by allowing the Grand Arcade to be built. They were told the town centre could not sustain TWO shopping centre. They said they had enough interest to fill BOTH the Galleries and the Grand Arcade. through various reasons this never happened and some units in the Galleries were never let. Then the Robin Park shopping area expanded and it was free to park at so this was another nail in the town centre shopping. Over time shopping habits changed and the big stores from C&A -BHS- Debenhams- Marks & Spencers to name a few closed down. Another reason for the demise is internet shopping why trail into any town when you can sit at a computer and order anything you want.

Comment by: Cyril on 11th September 2022 at 16:16

You're right Edna and Fred it seems that the council has come to realise or decided that Wigan town centre as a place for folks to shop is finished, they've probably opted for high end leisure and hospitality in the hope that these venues may keep it alive, plus they'll be able to charge them high end business rates.

Bruce, the council should also stand up and admit their part in the blame for the demise of the town centre too, the market traders were on their knees pleading for the council to be lenient with them over market stall rents, but no. Obviously they'd forgotten that it's the market and the stalls that bring shoppers into a town, and if these stalls begin to suffer and unable to offer bargains with having to charge more to cover rental costs, then it is obvious folks won't come and begin to go elsewhere.

In your statement:- 'Wigan area residents have caused the demise of Wigan as a shopping centre.' Does that include yourself, or do you see yourself as a resident but not by choice, and by your rules that doesn't make you a Wiganer.

Comment by: Tom on 11th September 2022 at 16:52

Sounds like Bruce is saying Wigan been ruined by Wiganers.

Comment by: Bruce Almighty on 11th September 2022 at 19:27

Indeed, Tom, Wigan has been ruined by Wiganers.
Any business will thrive if it has a good customer base. The council can't force people to spend their money in Wigan, they are free to please themselves where they do their shopping and if the locals had all stayed loyal to Wigan businesses they would have contunued to flourish. Business is just that, business, and business will go where there is money to be made. That's why Wigan has so many bars and fast food takeaways, because that's what a lot of Wiganers spend their money on. If they didn't, they would soon close and move elsewhere.

Comment by: Pat McC on 11th September 2022 at 19:38

My first memories of Wigan were as a newly-married girl, who came from a small village in Wales. I was so very impressed by the market and shops - so much choice of everything that you might need. Over years, Saturday afternoons were spent shopping in town - chicken from the market; cheese from the Cheese Cabin; Edwards barm cakes from the top end of Royal Arcade; calling in at Smiths in Mesnes Street so that the boys could mooch through the children's books; some window shopping before getting the bus home from Station Road. Happy times. Many towns have suffered the same fate as Wigan - it's such a terrible shame.

Comment by: Dave lewis on 12th September 2022 at 07:39

The shops that are still trading in market hall and makinson arcade will be up in arms next week when the hoarding goes up and the basement access is closed, all these shops get deliveries down there and some of them are through night and very early morning, access will be limited as there will be no drop off points for vehicles.

Comment by: Veronica on 12th September 2022 at 17:27

If the shops aren’t there the people won’t come. It’s no use blaming the people for not shopping there…anybody can blame who they want to it’s an amalgamation of reasons. If,if,if,if,if….load of rubbish to blame the people of Wigan, it’s all been said before….high rents forcing businesses out, demolishing old for new and not giving ordinary people what they want and stores moving to the outskirts of town with traffic jams impeding the journey’s. Making it much easier for people to just give up and order off the internet. The town has been ruined with the wrong decisions taken. It’s what is happening everywhere it’s just fortunate that most people can travel to other towns because the business’s are still there. They wouldn’t go there if Wigan still had the shops/stores that used to be there.

Comment by: Bruce Almighty on 13th September 2022 at 16:46

A fine example of self-contradiction there, Verinica.

Comment by: Veronica on 13th September 2022 at 19:25

i would say more a case of ‘catch 22’ Bruce.

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