With over 50% of spending now away from the high street the days of high streets populated by independent butchers, bakers and candlestick makers is now over, the way we shop as a nation has simply changed beyond recognition.
This question of what to do with our town centres lead the government to commission an independent review published by Mary Portas to propose ways to revitalise the high streets. However, councils such as Canterbury have chosen to move in directions contrary to the findings of the report by, for example, raising parking prices in the city centre despite the recommendation for free parking. The high-street has seen even more of its independent shops closing over the year replaced my large chains.
This documentary aims to find out how shoppers retailers and councils see the future of the high street with relationship to the Internet and out of town shopping centres. The high street has historically been dominated by retail shops but is it now time to allow the retail spaces to be occupied by chains of coffee shops, bars, restaurants and hairdressers a Mecca for leisure frequented by those with high disposable incomes, or can we find a more inclusive solution for our town centres – what happens if we do not?