Opinion: Token gestures cost less than rent and rates reform

Houses of Parliament

Last year’s announcement of yet another high street taskforce had me channelling the cultural icon that is Brenda from Bristol as I shouted across the office “What, another one??!!”.

I must admit I’ve not kept a close tally on the number of grandly convened high street advisory bodies, but we must surely be into the hundreds by now. Or maybe it just seems that way.

Sir John Timpson’s effort has been far more focused and productive than most of his predecessors’. His panel of retail experts at least had some grounding in the nuts and bolts of retail.

In fact, I even worked with one of them in the dim and distant past. But as with pretty much every other report into the plight of the high street, I’ve yet to see any of the recommendations acted on.


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