Primark store could be a blessing for Truro

Primark are set to open their doors to a brand new Cornish crowd in Truro in Spring 2016. Some local independent traders do believe it is a good move but others are worried about the future.

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Primark, in Lemon Quay
  • Well known for its independent retailers, in recent years Cornwall has been flooded with popular retailers
  • Primark have signed a 20 year lease for 50,000 sq/ft in Truro, Lemon Quay
  • It will be the first Primark in Cornwall

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Many independent shops are located in Pydar Mews, Truro
One local trader and three high street stores were relocated in January 2015 to make space for the 50,000 sq/ft Primark store in Cornwall. Market traders have been told they would be looked after whilst the new store is being built but many are fearful.

‘An insight into what an independent retailer thinks’

Daniel, owner of Steampunk and Print, believed the new store is what Truro needs to boost the foot fall. Also, at the moment commuters are currently having to travel over an hour to Plymouth just to visit Primark. He said,”I’m not too worried about Primark opening next year. Initially people will be very excited, but it will die down after a while because it is what happened when TK Maxx came to Truro.”

Even though the market traders were told they would be ‘looked after’ are reported to be the most anxious of the huge chain store arrival. This is because they are very close to where the new Primark will be which could potentially result in them being pushed out of Truro.

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TK Maxx, near Steampunk and Print
‘Diverse communities’

A survey was done on the social media site Twitter and it found that 69% of people do prefer shopping at well known, high street retailers. This is because they have online stores, they have cheaper and more reliable stock and you know if what you’re buying is of good quality. Many people said they like independent shops better as they’re more ‘unique’, the customer service is usually better and that they establish more diverse communities.

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A Christmas pop up shop in Truro
There was a common trend in most people’s answers, even if they did say they preferred high street retailers and this was that independent shops are usually more expensive, so that’s why they tend to shop in high street retailers more often.

One individual from Cornwall said, “Overall I prefer high street retailers but I do like a bit of both. Independent shops are good for unique items, whereas high street stores are cheaper and you know if what they sell is of good quality.”

Click here to hear more from Daniel:

Thousands of students will fail to pay back loan

Thousands of students will fail to pay back loan

Students who started University after 2012 will have an average debt of £53,400, the annual Push University Guide’s student debt survey found.

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Students studying in the library at Falmouth University
  • Since 1998 students have had to pay for University
  • In 2012 the £3,000 tuition fee increased to £9,000
  • Earlier this year it was also decided maintenance grants would be scrapped for 2016

Despite being left with mountains of debt, the majority of students will fail to pay back their student loan because it gets written off after thirty years. According to the Institute for Fiscal Studies (IFS) only a quarter of these loans will actually be repaid.

Student walking home with their food shopping
Student walking home with their food shopping

‘An insight into what a third year thinks’

Liam, who studies Music Technology at Falmouth University said, “If it weren’t for Student Finance I wouldn’t have been able to go to University”. However, when he was confronted about the debt he then stated, “I don’t think I will ever pay it off”.

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Falmouth University, where Liam studies

Despite the mountains of debt, prospective students shouldn’t be put off University because it is likely you won’t pay off all of your debt.

As students are worried about their debt, many do start looking for jobs and some even secure a job before they graduate from University. However, the amount you pay back when you have a job, whether you earn lots of money or not, is very little.

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Career Zone office at Falmouth University

‘Maintenance loans scrapped’

Although maintenance grants have been scrapped for 2016, they have been replaced with a higher maintenance loan so low and middle income students shouldn’t worry too much. However, they will be left with even more debt than previous students.