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Miliband’s high street plans slammed | 15 April 2013

Plans to let local authorities ban certain types of retailers from their high streets have been met with fierce criticism.

The British Retail Consortium has claimed that the idea, introduced by Labour leader Ed Miliband last Monday, would stall the rejuvenation of British high streets rather than speed it up.

In a statement cited by thegrocer.co.uk, the group said: “What we need is more flexibility over use classes in the planning system not restrictions. Our high streets are undergoing a period of rapid change. They need to be able to adapt quickly to changing circumstances – changing customer lifestyle and buying preferences.

“We do need an appropriate mix of retailers and other service providers in our town centres but regulating types of businesses is not the answer.”

During his speech on Monday, Miliband argued that councils were currently unable to prevent the same types of shops appearing in their high streets.

According to channel4.com, a PricewaterhouseCoopers survey backed this up, revealing that the amount of payday loan shops appearing on the high street has spiked by 20 per cent, whilst the amount of computer game, card and health food shops had declined by more than this.

However, commercial property investors are unlikely to be happy if their local council limits the type of tenants they can go rent to.

The views expressed in this post are those of the author and are not necessarily those of Qube Global Software. All facts are verified where possible directly by the author.

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