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High streets of the future will need to think beyond retail, says new report

19 Jun 2023

Just 42% of people in the UK rate their local high street as good or very good, according to the latest Legal & General Rebuilding Britain Index.
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Stellar line-up for Independent Bookshop Week

19 Jun 2023

A stellar line-up of authors have been taking part in this week’s Independent Bookshop Week 2023 with the likes of Ann Cleeves, AJ Pearce, Danielle Brown, poet laureate Simon Armitage and... Read more…

Bira calls for level playing field as Amazon UK Services pays zero corporation tax again

8 Jun 2023

Bira, the British Independent Retailers Association, has expressed its concern and frustration after it was revealed that Amazon UK Services had, for the second consecutive year, paid zero... Read more…

Bank holidays fail to boost retail sales in May

7 Jun 2023

The three bank holiday weekends in May failed to boost UK retail sales, with growth slowing in May according to new industry data.
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Retailers need to rise to challenge of keeping the high street is relevant

7 Jun 2023

New data shows that the public is craving a change to their local high street in order to continue visiting it, with nearly half of those surveyed believing that high streets are no longer... Read more…

Retailers urged to prepare for ban on selling single use plastic

5 Jun 2023

The government has published guidance to help businesses prepare for the ban on single-use plastics which is due to come into force in October.
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Retail workers face money challenges at alarming rate

31 May 2023

A report published by financial institution Claro Money’s wellbeing division on the effects of money worries for retail workers found that 73% of retail workers feel negatively about their... Read more…

Federation of Independent Retailers says more needed to be done to support smaller businesses in Wales

24 May 2023

Whilst it has welcomed some elements of the Welsh Retail Action plan, the Federation of Independent Retailers (the Fed) said more is needed to be done to support smaller businesses.
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Nearly half of customer service staff consider quitting over growing customer abuse

22 May 2023

More than two-fifths (44%) of customer service staff are considering leaving their roles due to increasing levels of cost-of-living fuelled abuse from customers.
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Friendliest high-street businesses include hairdressers and coffee shops, reports new study

22 May 2023

More than half of Britons (55%) say they have received helpful life advice from a local small business owner, new research reports.
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High streets of the future will need to think beyond retail, says new report

Posted on in Business News

Just 42% of people in the UK rate their local high street as good or very good, according to the latest Legal & General Rebuilding Britain Index.

Shopping street

In fact, when factoring in the quality of local shops, cafes, eateries, banks, Post Offices and other amenities, London is the only region across the UK where more than half of residents (58%) were positive about their high street.

Recognising the need to move beyond a ‘one-size-fits-all’ approach, Legal & General is calling for a change in how we create relevant and resilient high streets – prioritising localised innovation, diversification, and regeneration – to level up local economies.

The region with the most negative perception of the high street is Wales, where only 33% rate their high street positively. This was followed closely behind by Scotland (34%) and the South West (37%). Conversely, 58% of households in London rate their local high street positively.

The data shows that the UK’s left-behind communities most need a revamp for their high street. 79% of households achieving a High RBI score rate their local high street as good or very good. This falls to just 22% for those with a Low RBI score.

Similarly, higher-income households (69% of those with an HHI of £100k+) are far more likely than low-income households (36% of those with an HHI of under £20k) to have a better opinion of their local high street

UK households still value a thriving high street, with 30% identifying investment into the local high street as a key government spending priority – the highest being from those in the lowest income households.

High streets of the future will need to think beyond retail – with households placing greater emphasis on services, food and drink and leisure facilities as ‘must-haves’ rather than retail options.

Although a shift in consumer culture has been evidenced, it is also clear that around three-quarters of retail spend still takes place within a store; the UK’s high streets and physical retail are, therefore, not dead – but must respond to an evolving consumer culture if they are to survive.
The findings also demonstrate the cultural shift in the UK high street – with people no longer just prioritising the traditional and transactional retail-only environment. Key public services, including health services and cultural and leisure facilities, are now vital cornerstones of a thriving High Street.
The findings show that households are more like to view available services, such as postal or banking services (80%) and food and drink (80%) as having an essential role in making their high street a thriving part of their local community. This was slightly higher than the 78% feeling that retail has an important role to play, while a further 57% place importance on leisure and tourism.

The Post Office (77%), banks (71%) and chemists (69%) are seen as staples – each considered as being a ‘must-have’ for a High Street to be prosperous. Retail options are far less likely to feature – with only 41% identifying fashion shops, 17% identifying nail salons and 11% identifying bookmakers.

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