view counter

Majestic gone - Brighton Road starting to look a bit sad?

6 years ago...

I walked along Brighton Road for the first time in a while at the weekend and I noticed that Majestic Wines has shut down there.

This leaves Brighton Road looking quite sad now as that is a big shopfront combined with the empty Blockbuster right next door. There was already the RJ Boorer closure and the shop next to the Red Rose restaurant that has been empty for years on end.

I did think it strange that Majestic closed down as there has been a lot of fanfare in the press this week about how well they are doing and all of their new store openings. I suppose that they just struggled with the (very) local competition from Laithwaites and Ex-Cellar, or perhaps it was just a greedy landlord?


Why pick on Brighton road?
The whole of Surbiton looks pretty depressed to me.

I have to say Surbiton as a whole is looking a little sad. Maple Road is lovely and is definitely on the up if not already there. However, the collection of Charity Shops and betting shops in Surbiton really doesn't help the High Street.

There is definitely a steady decline to Surbiton's once vibrant High Street.

Perhaps you have been in the area longer than me, but I first came to Surbiton in 1995, and I can't remember it ever being much better than it is now, certainly not vibrant!

People always complain about the chains moving in, but both Zizzi and Pizza Express are better than the empty building and awful pub that were there before, Waitrose is a massive improvment on the tumble-down B&Q etc.

The pubs in the centre are better as well. The Surbiton Flyer was pretty much a no-go for normal people until about 5 years ago, now it is a nice pub, Corky's has turned into a wine bar and the Duke of York is better than the old Hogshead.

The charity/betting shop situation is bad, but this is always going to be a problem in a town like Surbiton which is affluent enough to have high rents, but where most of the affluence actually goes up to London on the train every morning!

Kingston is the other problem, because it is so close that most shops want to be there to benefit from it's massvie footfall rather than pay a good proportion of the rent and rates to be in Surbiton with local shoppers only.

I don't think that Victoria Road looks great by any means, but it is better than it has been for a while.

Brighton Road is the one that really risks having a big downturn. The Blockbuster, beauty salons, Majestic & RJ Boorer shops show no sign of occupancy and that is a long stretch to be empty. There have always been a lot of taekaways down there, but also a lot of restaurants. It is disappointing that Chicken Cottage has chosen to open up about two doors down from KFC as that has not done much ofr that part of the road either.

Apparently the management of The Red Rose bought the shop next door and couldn't get planning to knock through, so they keep it for storage. I agree the road is becoming a bit of an eyesore with too many takeaways on the other side, very messy.

I only picked on Brighton Road because it is all of the empty shopfronts that make an area look most depressed, in my opinion. Other parts of the town do not seem so badly affected, although admittedly this is often because of charity shops taking up the slack when businesse close down.

I actually think that the Maple Road area of the town centre is very nice, and the area around the station roundabout isn't at all bad. Things do get a lot worse as you go further down Victoria Road, though.

Comment viewing options

Select your preferred way to display the comments and click "Save settings" to activate your changes.

By posting content on, you agree to adhere to the following guidelines.

  • Your username and password must only be used by you, keep them safe. If a posting is made using your username and password it will be considered to have been posted by you. If you have a friend who wants to use our site and post messages on the site, show them how to register.
  • Be courteous at all times, inciting racial hatred, posting abusive, obscene, threatening, harassing, defamatory, libellous or sexually explicit material or any material that is found to be offensive is not acceptable and we may suspend your username and password.
  • Retaliating to offensive posts causes more problems for other users on the discussion boards. Just report such messages to us using the Feedback link which is available at the top of every page or the 'report this' link associated with individual postings. We will act on every report we receive.
  • Please respect other people's work and do not post material that infringes copyright.
  • Do not post information that you know to be confidential or sensitive or otherwise in breach of the law. You should only post material that you know to be public knowledge. If you have any doubts do not post it on the site.
  • Never attempt to gain unauthorised access to any area of the site. This is known as hacking and is illegal.
  • Content posted represents the opinions of the author, and does not represent the opinions of or its affiliates and has not been approved or issued by You should be aware that the other participants are strangers to you and may make statements which may be misleading, deceptive or wrong.
  • Spoofing or posing as another user is unacceptable. Anonymous users' postings should always be considered with suspicion.
  • Help keep a safe place for information and opinion. Please alert us of any anti-social behaviour as described above.
Please note that does not monitor the comments posted and we are therefore reliant upon users reporting antisocial behaviour.