High Street Review
Mary Portas was appointed to lead an independent review into the future of the high street. The report and subsequent government response have now been published.
The Portas review
On 17 May 2011 the Prime Minister announced that he had asked Mary Portas, leading retail marketing consultant, to undertake a review of the English high street. The report was published on 13 December 2011: The Portas review: an independent review into the future of our high streets (PDF, 2.0 Mb) . You can also read the press notice: Mary Portas sets out her vision for the future of our high streets.
The Government’s formal response to the recommendations made by Mary Portas in her report was published by the Department for Communities and Local Government on 30 March 2012.
The purpose of the Portas review was to identify what the Government, local authorities, businesses and others can do together to promote the development of new models of prosperous and diverse high streets. It forms part of the Government’s work on the Growth Agenda. The main aims of the review were to:
- Examine the case for developing town centres that contribute to promoting economic growth, creating jobs and improving quality of life in local areas
- Explore new business models for high streets relevant to the modern consumer
- Recommend what action government, businesses and other organisations should take to create diverse, sustainable high streets where small businesses and independent retailers are able to thrive.
Why review the high street?
High streets are a very visible indicator of how well a local community and economy is thriving. They are recognised as important hubs of social interaction and providers of employment and local commerce.
The recent recession has had a significant negative impact on a number of high streets throughout England. The Government would like to reverse this downward trend; working with retailers, local government and others to improve the prosperity, diversity and social and economic contribution of the high street to our lives.
Understanding high street performance
The Department for Business, Innovation and Skills has also published a report 'Understanding high street performance', which explores the many factors impacting on the economic and social performance of town centres and High Streets. This study is intended to help inform government and local authority decision-making regarding town centres, high streets and local economic growth. It has also provided input to the Mary Portas review. View the full report (150 pages): Understanding high street performance (PDF, 2.1 Mb) . The executive summary is also available separately: Understanding high street performance: executive summary (PDF, 267 Kb) .