Clitheroe Conservative Councillors call for support to Shop locally on High Street Saturday March 16th

Clitheroe Councillors Sue Hind and Pam Dowson wo is the Town Mayor have  today encouraged people in Clitheroe to join them in showing their support for Clitheroe town centre  by shopping locally for High Street Saturday on 16 March

High Street Saturday, a new campaign day, aims to celebrate the place of high streets at the heart of communities like Clitheroe  across the country. As part of the day, local people are being encouraged to: 

·         Pledge to shop locally on High Street Saturday

·         Share photos and messages online using #HighStreetSaturday

·          Ribble Valley Borough Council is committed  to make good use of the Future High Street Fund, provided by the Government to improve Clitheroe  town centres and make it fit for the future  

High streets have long been a place to bring communities together, a place for local people to access vital services and a place for businesses to thrive. But, the Government recognises that it is becoming harder for businesses on high streets across the country to compete with out-of-town shopping centres and online retailers. That’s why the Conservatives in government have: 

·         Delivered over £10 billion of business rates support since 2016, including cutting small retailers’ bills by a third.

·         Backed community leaders with £675 million of funding to help modernise their high streets and town centres. 

·         Relaxed planning rules to support new homes on the high street, transforming them into community hubs where people work, live and shop.

High Street Saturday is a chance for local people to come together to celebrate and support the high streets at the heart of their local communities.’’

Sue Hind commented “High streets like Clitheroe  are instrumental in bringing people together – acting as a meeting place for friends and families and long supporting jobs for local people. 

“But, as the retail market changes, I am encouraging people across Clitheroe to join me and Conservatives across the country on 16 March in pledging to shop locally to support the independent businesses we all know and love, particularly in our case  including Clitheroe  market.  

Pam Dowson added “The Conservatives in Government are determined to support our high streets by taking action on business rates, supporting high streets to modernise and helping to transform empty shops into new homes.”

Commenting for local business Kevin Horkin Clitheroe retailer said:

“While the changing retail market has been challenging for businesses like mine to adapt to as more people head to out-of-town shopping centre and online, support on business rates  has helped to ensure we can continue trading on the great Clitheroe town centre. 

“It’s great to see the Government prioritising this and dedicating a national campaign day, and I look forward to welcoming those taking part in High Street Saturday on 16 March to Clitheroe.”

Notes to Editors

·         Saturday 16 March will be a national campaign day to celebrate the high street.Communities Secretary James Brokenshire recently told a conference: ‘I can tell you today there will be a national campaign day on Saturday 16 March in support of the high street … and like me, I expect you all to be out there, making the case for the Great British High Street’ (James Brokenshire speech to CCA conference, 22 February 2019, archived).

Conservatives are supporting high streets to adapt and thrive by: 

·         Cutting small retailers’ bills by a third and taking 600,000 businesses out of paying business rates altogether, so our local businesses are able to provide more local jobs to their communities. Our £1.5 billion package announced at the 2018 Budget to support high streets builds on our strong record of over £10 billion of business rates support since 2016 (MHCLG, Press Release, 24 January 2019, link).

·         Backing community leaders with £675 million of funding to help modernise their high streets and town centres. The Future High Streets Fund will empower leaders on the ground who know their communities best to transforming our town centres into the thriving community hubs of the future (MHCLG, Press Release, 26 December 2018, link).

·         Relaxing planning rules to support new homes on our high streets to transform them into community hubs where people work, live and shop. There are currently over 27,000 premises lying vacant in England’s town centres, if just a fraction of these vacant premises were turned into homes, thousands more people could have a roof over their head. We are also linking landlords to vacant retail units so we transform empty spaces into much needed housing for local people (MHCLG, Press Release, 7 November 2018, link).  

·         Establishing an expert panel to diagnose issues that affect out high streets and advise on how to make them thrive. Chaired by Sir John Timpson, Chairman of Timpson, the multiple service retailer, the panel will focus on what consumers and local communities want from their high streets (MHCLG, Press Release, 16 July 2018, link).

·         Rejuvenating the high streets with the Great British High Street Awards and supporting businesses through the Future High Street Forum. The Forum is a partnership between government, retail and property industries to restructure town centres and support the digital high street. (TheGreatBritishHighStreet, 17 October 2017, link; DCLG, Press Release, 30 November 2015, link).