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High streets and town centres in 2030 836.39 KB
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Summary

The six months over which our inquiry took place appeared to be the most turbulent for the high street so far. Barely a week went by without headlines pronouncing the ‘death of the high street’ or a major retailer announcing a restructuring or a fall in profits. An enormous change has taken place in retail in recent years. The traditional pattern of making purchases in physical stores, both in and out-of-town, has been profoundly disrupted by the growth of online shopping. The impact of this on our high streets and town centres in the form of store closures, persistently empty shops and declining footfall is clear for all to see. Against this concerning backdrop, we make a set of recommendations to Government, local government, local communities, retailers and landlords to be acted on now. Unless this urgent action is taken, we fear that further deterioration, loss of visitors and dereliction may lead to some high streets and town centres disappearing altogether

Terms of Reference

  • The role of high streets and town centres in contributing to the local economy and the health, wellbeing, cohesion and cultural life of the local community
  • The economic, demographic, social and technological challenges facing high streets and town centres and how they are likely to develop over the next ten years
  • How high streets and town centres are adapting to meet these challenges, the conditions necessary for sustainability, for example, residential development and related infrastructure, and how local areas are planning for the future
  • The outlook for high streets and town centres that cannot rely on consumer spending and business growth and investment
  • Whether councils have the planning, licensing, tax raising and other tools needed to help local areas flourish and how they make use of these
  • The legacy of the Government’s previous work on the high street, including the Portas Pilots, the Future High Streets Forum and the Great British High Street
Publication Details
Issue:
Eleventh Report of Session 2017–19
Publication place:
London