Marks & Spencer should step up the pace of its store modernisation programme again, executive chairman Sir Stuart Rose has said.

Speaking at a BCSC/Movers and Shakers property networking event this week, Rose said he was “unrepentant” about the scale and cost of the store refurbishment programme begun in 2004 and said: “I’d do it again. The only difference is that I’d do it quicker and I’d spend more.”

Rose said 2010 was a good time for revitalising the store modernisation programme, in spite of a degree of pessimism about the post-election economic outlook.

He said bricks-and-mortar shops would continue to provide reasons for consumer to frequent the high street, but that new ways might have to be found to entice customers. “We might have to look at Boots, M&S and B&Q teaming up to present an offer under the same roof,” he said.