Home Business News London business districts Westminster and Lambeth are on the decline

London business districts Westminster and Lambeth are on the decline

by LLB Reporter
15th Sep 23 5:32 am

With the recent news that HSBC will be moving from their Canary Wharf office and many other businesses are following suit.

The most popular London business districts have seen a shift in office space demand due to the evolution of worklife practices, such as hybrid working.

On the up– The West End

“ Known as a growing AI hub, this district is home to high-quality office spaces and has managed to stay in a strong position despite the economic shift in recent years. It doesn’t look like demand is going down anytime soon either, with a 40% search increase year on year, showing how resilient the district truly is.”

“Burberry HQ and The Telegraph are just a few of the major offices in the West End, and if you were to get an office here, you would be open to a huge amount of opportunity, sitting amongst some of the biggest brands in finance and media. Being historically known for having the most expensive office spaces out of all the London districts, with prices in St James and Mayfair reaching up to £130 per square foot to rent per month, it seems like this is not warding off any business prospects.”

“While demand has increased, so has investment in building high-quality office spaces in this area, which has led to businesses being able to offer the best working conditions for employees to improve worklife sentiment and employee retention.”

Losing the most interest – Westminster and Lambeth

“From looking at the data, I can see that both Westminster and Lambeth are the districts losing the most interest, with Westminster having the largest YoY decrease of 67% in search demand and Lambeth facing the largest month on month decrease of 50%. I believe this decline for both districts is primarily attributed to a shift in focus towards the redevelopment and expansion of residential properties as opposed to office spaces.”

Canary Wharf

“Famous for its picturesque skyscrapers and being one of the biggest financial hubs in London, with major firms like Barclays headquarters situated here, Canary Wharf has developed a thriving financial district. Built with the future in mind, it’s no surprise why it’s the most searched place for office space out of the top ten districts.”

“From the data, I can see that YoY the search demand for offices here has gone down by 19%, which I believe is reflective of work pattern changes, especially in the finance world where the concept of hybrid working was unheard of pre-pandemic. With more and more firms adopting this change, it has caused many businesses to size down, as we have seen in recent news with HSBC, and a trend we might see continue in the next year or two.”


“The home of creative industries, inspiration, and a bustling cultural scene, Camden might be one of the smaller districts, but it’s certainly not short of interest, coming in second in overall monthly Google searches out of the top ten districts.

“Being an underdog in the business scene, after having a full revitalisation in recent years, Camden has become London’s startup capital, offering its own unique atmosphere and home to big names like Atlantic Books and ASOS.”

“The town’s average rate of a Grade A office space is a bit more affordable than the skyscraper district, Canary Wharf, estimated at around £45 – £60 per square foot to rent per month.

“I still believe it’s a great place to start a business, especially if you are looking for somewhere more relaxed and affordable, especially with recent news of Camden’s new development to deliver more sustainable and co-working offices due to be completed by 2024.”

Kings Cross

“One of the fastest growing London business districts, situated in the borough of Camden, Kings Cross has one of the best transport connections with access to London underground services and two national mainline rail stations for commuters outside central London, which is no doubt why this would be an attractive spot for businesses to stay.”

“Attracting global giants such as Universal Music, I can see why this space would be somewhere businesses would be a fan of, as well as employees, due to its accessibility.

“With that said, when it comes to the average price of office rent here, it’s one of the most expensive places out of the top three business districts, estimated at around £65 – £87.50 per square foot. This could potentially ward off new business as this continues to rise, with an already significant decrease in Google search interest of 46% YoY.”

How should you go about choosing the best London district for your business?

“As work practices such as hybrid working continue to evolve, it’s imperative for businesses to anticipate and adapt to change. It’s essential to do your research and keep your business goals in mind when finding the right office space, as different districts can offer different opportunities for your business.“

“Excellent transport links, easy accessibility, and district culture all hold major importance when finding the right office, as this can really help boost employee morale and encourage employee attendance.

It’s clear to see that the West End district has proven the value of the investment in providing high-quality workspaces where businesses can thrive, and it will be interesting to see how this district continues to grow and revolutionise in the coming months to a year”.

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