Watford and Hemel Hempstead are amongst the UK towns predicted to suffer most from retail cuts, according to a new report.
Accountancy firm KPMG revealed the findings in a report about the future of towns and cities post COVID-19, published in January.
Out of 109 areas studied, Hemel Hempstead town centre ranked second most vulnerable post COVID and Watford was ranked number seven.
KPMG Chief Economist Yael Selfin said: “The pandemic has accelerated the adoption of online shopping, with consumers more likely to purchase household goods online than in a store.
“It has also made working from home acceptable and online gatherings rather than meeting in person the new norm, freeing endless hours of business travel and expense for better use. People are unlikely to return to the old ways of doing things.
“With fewer people coming into big cities and towns to work and shop, that leaves a big space in areas that were once characterised by bustling shops and offices.”
Overall, the report found that high streets could lose up to 400,000 retail jobs as a result of more people working from home and shopping online after the coronavirus pandemic.