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The future of Britain's high streets 英国传统购物街的未来

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英国的传统商业街被称为 "high street" 高街,这是购物者过去购买时尚品牌和必需品的地方,也是能找到熟悉高街品牌商店和连锁咖啡馆的地方。然而现在,面对来自大型购物中心和互联网购物的竞争,传统购物街的数量逐年减少,再也不见往日的熙攘。"随身英语" 讨论英国购物街近年来的变化。

Vocabulary: shopping 词汇:购物

Do you like shopping? For shopaholics in the UK, the place to head to used to be the 'high street'. This location refers to the streets in the centre of a town where businesses and popular branches of retail chains could be found. It was the place where you could find familiar fashion brands and essential everyday items. But change in our shopping habits has taken its toll on the British high street.

News about shops losing money and shutting is now common. Some city-centre department stores have closed and even long-established retailers such as Marks and Spencer have reported profit slumps. According to the accountancy firm Pricewaterhouse Coopers and the Local Data Company, a record 2,481 shops disappeared from UK high streets last year - up by 40%. Even some large warehouse-style stores in out-of-town retail parks, have gone bust and shut up shop.

As the BBC's Emma Simpson writes, things have become a lot harder for traditional retailers in recent years. They have faced rising costs from wages, business rates and the requirement to introduce Europe's new data law. But the biggest threat has come from online shopping. She says "Consumers now spend one in every five pounds online - and if businesses are seeing 20% fewer sales on the shop floor, as well as their fixed costs rising, then profit margins will be squeezed."

While some of us like to window shop - browsing for things to buy, only to purchase them online at a discount - the fact is that, overall, shoppers are making fewer visits to high streets. Eventually, town centres could become like ghost towns. If people aren't out and about shopping, they won't use other services, like cafes, restaurants and cinemas. It also results in job losses. The British Retail Consortium has already warned that 900,000 UK retail jobs could be lost by 2025. The high street has also suffered from the advent of big shopping malls, which offer a retail experience under one roof, with free parking, away from the bad weather!

Meanwhile, back on the high street, some shops still exist. Analysts have said it's those that have moved away from traditional retailing that are surviving. These include beauty salons, nail bars and independent coffee shops - but are these kinds of shops enough to keep the British high street open for business?

词汇表

shopaholic 购物狂

branch 分店

retail chain 连锁店

brand 品牌

take its toll 造成损失

department store 百货公司

retailer 零售商

profit 利润

slump 猛跌,下滑

warehouse-style store 仓储式商店

out-of-town 城外的,市郊的

retail park (郊外的)购物区,零售商业区

bust 破产的

business rate 商业税

consumer 消费者

shop floor 实体店里,商店里

fixed costs 固定成本

margin 利润

window shop 只逛不买;浏览商店橱窗,但无意购买

browse 随意看

ghost town "鬼镇",被废弃的城镇

shopping mall 购物中心

beauty salon 美容院

nail bar 美甲店

测验与练习

1. 阅读课文并回答问题。

1. According to the article, what sort of things could you buy on a traditional British high street?

2. Why are shops on the high street becoming more expensive to operate?

3. True or false? People are visiting the high street less because they look like ghost towns.

4. What can you do with your car at many large shopping malls?

5. According to the British Retail Consortium, what might be lost by 2025?

2. 请在不参考课文的情况下完成下列练习。选择一个意思合适的单词填入句子的空格处。

1. Have you seen this new shopping website? It sells all my favourite _______ at half the usual price!

brand branded branding brands

2. _______ seem to be waking up to the idea that shoppers buy more if they are offered a discount.

retailers consumers branches independent

3. The stress of his job has _______ on his body - he looks like he's 60 even though he's only 39!

take a toll taken its toll taken the toll takes a toll

4. I prefer to shop at small _______ shops where you get personal service.

out-of-town shopping mall browsing independent

5. My boyfriend spends hours _______ but he never actually buys anything - it's so annoying!

window shops window shopping window shopped window shopaholic

答案

1. 阅读课文并回答问题。

1. According to the article, what sort of things could you buy on a traditional British high street?

You could buy fashion brands and essential everyday items on the British high street.

2. Why are shops on the high street becoming more expensive to operate?

High streets are facing rising costs from wages, business rates and introducing Europe's new data law - these are some of the fixed costs.

3. True or false? People are visiting the high street less because they look like ghost towns.

False. Shoppers are making fewer visits to high streets. In the future town centres could become like ghost towns.

4. What can you do with your car at many large shopping malls?

One of the advantages at many shopping malls is you can park your car for free!

5. According to the British Retail Consortium, what might be lost by 2025?

The British Retail Consortium has already warned that 900,000 UK retail jobs could be lost by 2025.

2. 请在不参考课文的情况下完成下列练习。选择一个意思合适的单词填入句子的空格处。

1. Have you seen this new shopping website? It sells all my favourite brands at half the usual price!

2. Retailers seem to be waking up to the idea that shoppers buy more if they are offered a discount.

3. The stress of his job has taken its toll on his body - he looks like he's 60 even though he's only 39!

4. I prefer to shop at small independent shops where you get personal service.

5. My boyfriend spends hours window shopping but he never actually buys anything - it's so annoying!

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