By Daniel Hunter

A new report from the Local Data Company has revealed that high street vacancies remain 'stubbornly high'.

The report's data for Britain showed that the average vacancy rate in the top 650 centres was 14.1%, down just slightly from the previous reading of 14.2% taken in February.

Wales had the highest national vacancy rate, at an average of 17.5%, Scotland hit 14.9% and England 14.0%. Of the large centres, Blackburn had the highest vacancy rate of 26.9%. Cambridge recorded the lowest proportion of empty shops at 7%.

"This report clearly shows that whilst the rise of empty shops has stalled it still remains stubbornly high for many towns up and down the country," said Matthew Hopkinson, director of the Local Data Company, which monitors High Street occupancy and vacancy rates.

"Since August 2010 the national average has been above 14%, with a significant number being 'long-term sick' with little or no prospect of reoccupation as shops," he added.

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