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Mary Portas to Revamp High Street


Points include holding a National Market Day allowing people to try out low rent businesses and having affordable town centre parking.

Portas’ other recommendations include: relaxing licensing rules to encourage entrepreneurs to establish market stalls; encouraging town centres to focus on making their high streets accessible, attractive and safe; ensuring that large retailers support and mentor local businesses and independent retailers; and that town centres run high profile campaigns to get people involved in the Neighbourhood Plans, allowing the community a greater say. Portas wants these measures trialled in a number of high streets before implemented to show the Government how well the plans work. She is also calling for new out of town developments to be signed off by the Secretary of State and have an affordable shops quota to ensure that shoppers are not being lured away from the high street.


“I don’t want to live in a Britain that doesn’t care about community. And I believe that our high streets are a really important part of pulling people together in a way that a supermarket or shopping mall, however convenient, however entertaining and however slick, just never can,” said Portas. “Our high streets can be lively, dynamic, exciting and social places that give a sense of belonging and trust to a community. Something which, as the recent riots clearly demonstrated has been eroded and in some instances eradicated.”

“This review sets out what I think has led to the decline of our high streets, my vision of the future and the key things I believe we need to put in place to deliver that vision. I hope that my recommendations can be a catalyst for change but high streets must be ready to experiment, try new things, take risks and become destinations again.”

The governments response to this is due to be published April 2012.

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