In short, no. We don’t think they are.

Like everyone we have been shocked by the riots in London. Images of both young and old ripping shops apart have been shocking. Designed by Good People have many friends who own or live above shops. We can’t imagine the fear that shop owners must have had about their lively hoods and safety.

Today the government has announced that they are allowing shops to install security shutters and bypass planning regulations.

This will have a significant effect on our local high streets making them look like high security industrial estates at night and may be counter productive to the local economy.

In Sydenham the only shop that was looted (to our knowledge) was Cost Cutter. They had a security shutter.

It appears as if, across London, security shutters did very little to save shops from damage and looting. They were often just ripped from the side rails.

You can find more images of shops with security shutters broken into here:

And here:

One thing we were amazed to find out was that having a security shutter makes no difference to your insurance premiums.
They make our town centres look ugly.
They get dirty quickly and attract graffiti and anti social behavior making town centres less inviting so there are less people around at night making them less safe.
Inturn that detracts from the whole town centre which, we believe, discourages trade for all shop keepers.

They cost about £1000-4000 to install depending on what type you go for.
To put that in perspective, Billings front window glass cost £500 (they broke it while installing equipement).
The vast majority of shops in Sydenham do not have roller shutters and were left untouched in the recent troubles.

It would be a shame to make all our town centres look like industrial war zones by installing security shutters everywhere. There are other solutions that we hopefully will be working on soon.

We believe the riots and looting are an isolated, if terrifying case, that hopefully won’t happen again in our lifetime.

Keep trading, keep buying and support your local high street.

Image of Teddy from DOKO STOCK Images of rioter by Banksy.

Great blog post about roller shutters here

An alternative, more attractive roller shutter:



  1. 1 blockblind October 13, 2011 at 9:56 am

    Hi……..It’s hard to find knowledgeable people on this topic, but you sound like you know what you’re talking about! Thanks for sharing this with others.

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