THE undersupply of industrial capacity in the Worthing area continues to worsen, says property consultant SHW.

It warns it is a situation which inhibits current and future economic development in the town.

A recent letting of 5,700 sq ft at Hazelwood Trading Estate and a couple of warehouses under offer means SHW only has a handful of industrial properties available.

The situation is similar in areas adjacent to Worthing.

SHW has let a unit at Rudford Industrial Estate, Ford, but again demand is outstripping supply to a considerable extent.

Current availability is only 66,000 sq ft, which is just 2.4 per cent of total built stock, arguably the lowest proportion in the entire South East.

Most vacant space is small and of 1970s / 1980s build but increasingly landlords are conducting refurbishment as rents continue to rise.

Duncan Marsh, Business Space Partner for SHW, said: “There is an acute scarcity situation we have been dealing with for some time, and despite repeated calls for action nothing has happened.

“What is needed is for the situation to be prioritised by government, councils, planning authorities and private developers in order to create more favourable conditions for local businesses, and to entice new companies to the county.”