Aim The aim of the thesis is to try to establish, through a study of suburban shops and services in Palmerston North, some of the past and present trends and patterns which might assist in the future planning of suburban facilities. Chapter I describes the general patterns of suburban shops and services. In Chapters II, III and IV shopping centres of four or more shops and services are examined in greater detail, while Chapter V is a case study of shops, services and shopping patterns in Milson suburb. Method Direct observation and classification of suburban shops and services was followed by interviews with shopkeepers in some suburban shopping centres, and finally a random sample of Milson shoppers was interviewed in their homes. The first task was to order and define suburban shops and services so that they could be studied. The Palmerston North City Council Town Planning Department's definition of the central business district (or city centre) was used, and shops within its boundaries excluded. All other shops listed in the Town Planning Department's booklet "Suburban Shopping: List of Activities: March 1968" were marked on large-scale maps of the city and checked in the field; new shops were added and defunct ones deleted. All the different functions found in suburban shopping centres were listed (Table III) and groups of shops were classified according to the number of shops and services situated together (Table I). The location of shops and services and the association of functions were mapped, and the larger groups of shops with four or more functions, termed shopping centres, were studied in detail. All the owners or managers of shops, as well as hairdressers and barbers in all the major shopping centres (10 - 16 functions) and some of the minor centres (4 - 8 functions) were interviewed. Only three people refused to answer the questionnaire (Appendix A), and in two of these cases some of the information was obtained from the firms' managers. In order to obtain detailed information on shopping patterns, and to compare the use of suburban shops with visits to the city centre and other shops, a random sample of 95 Milson shoppers was interviewed in their homes (Appendix B).