Nearly 26,000 shops went out of business in the first nine months of this year, with multiple retailers as badly affected as independents.
One in 10 of the 251,462 shops in 705 town centres monitored by the Local Data Company were forced out of business, as the worst recession since the Second World War sent consumer spending into freefall. But the LDC's analysts found that retailers with more than five shops had endured failures of 9.9 per cent, compared with 10.1 per cent of independents.
Matthew Hopkinson, a director of the LDC, said: "Multiples have suffered from the lack of consumer credit and independents are suffering more from the lack of liquidity from the banks to keep going."
More than 20 per cent of shopping mall outlets, department stores and mail-order centres have collapsed and 18 per cent of womenswear and childrenswear shops shut between 1 January and 30 September.