Stockbroker warns towns will go same way as villages

Elderly will suffer as more shopping is done online.

AS local authorities put the squeeze on town centres, a stockbroker is warning that market towns like Honiton could “end up going the same way as villages”.

Pieter Burger says the cost of parking is already driving shoppers out of Honiton and that new charges in High Street will only make matters worse.

He predicts that more and more people will end up shopping online, putting the elderly at a disadvantage.

“They don’t access the internet and they will suffer,” he said.

“We are seeing what happened to villages happening to towns.

“They will become ghost towns.”

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And he pointed out: “More charges are being imposed as two new out-of-town supermarkets, offering free parking, are due to be built in Honiton.”

Mr Burger, who serves on the executive committee of Honiton and District Chamber of Commerce and Industry, said internet giant Amazon saw profits jump to �147 million in the last financial quarter.

However, he warned: “The company is taxed in the United States so Britain doesn’t benefit.”

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