Partly Cloudy

Partly Cloudy

max temp: 15°C

min temp: 5°C

ESTD 1874 Search

UK: British Retail Consortium calls for action over rates bills

13:09 27 December 2012

A brisk start to the post-Christmas sales season cannot disguise the cost pressures being felt by high street retailers, says the British Rail Consortium

A brisk start to the post-Christmas sales season cannot disguise the cost pressures being felt by high street retailers, says the British Rail Consortium

HELP for Britain’s ailing high streets should be a top priority for MPs in 2013, the retail industry’s trade body said yesterday.

shares

The British Retail Consortium (BRC) called on MPs to step up the pressure on the Government to reverse a planned 2.6% increase in business rates due in April.

Its demand comes in the wake of recent figures showing that the empty shops rate in town centres has reached a new high of 11.3%. A poll of MPs also revealed that two-thirds believe high streets in their constituencies have deteriorated noticeably over the last five years.

BRC director-general Helen Dickinson said: “MPs understand that high streets are focal points for communities and essential to local economies.

“But many high streets are facing a real endurance test in these challenging times, and rising operating costs are making matters worse.”

Rates have risen by more than 10% in the last two years, adding more than £500million to retailers’ overheads amid the tough trading conditions.

The BRC is running a campaign called Fair Rates for Retail in a bid to establish a more sustainable formula. Next April’s 2.6% rise is based on September’s Retail Prices Index inflation figure.

Ms Dickinson said: “I urge MPs to keep pushing for change if they want to breathe life back into our town centres and preserve and protect local businesses.”

Another rise in rates would pose a serious threat to vulnerable town centres and mean fewer jobs, especially for young people, she added.

shares

0 comments

Arlingtons new art exhibition, Liz and Ken Ambler at the launch

Music, art, wine and a great deal more

Steven and Debbie Morgan pictured when they took over The Royal Oak earlier this year

Firefighters were called to a pub last night following a water leak which caused flooding.

Abby Curtis who is opening Pump and Grind coffee shop in Great Colman Street with Tom Kerridge

The business team behind a new cafe have said they are disappointed they will not able to serve alcohol when opening for the first time on Saturday.

Bury Council Building Angel Hill.

The new chairman of Bury Town Council has said he intends to make the authority relevant after claiming it has done “almost nothing” for the last few years.

Rachel Pearlman, Zoe Bradbury, Jack Northcott and Jordan Keeble of Ginger Nut Media team  at the OXO Tower in London, after being awarded as the best level of support during Advanced Apprenticeships.

A digital advertising firm is celebrating after scooping an award for its supportive training regime.

Royal Mail has seen a rise in annual profits.

Royal Mail today reported a rise in underlying annual profits as a squeeze on costs helped offset a lower than expected performance from its parcel business.

Tesco  Group Chief Executive Dave Lewis

Tesco paid £4.1 million to new boss Dave Lewis in his first six months after he was brought in from consumer goods group Unilever to turn around the embattled supermarket.

A branch of cash and carry chain Booker

The country’s largest cash and carry chain is to buy Londis and Budgens in a £40million deal to boost its scale amid the ongoing supermarket price war.

Colchester High Street

An alliance of businesses in central Colchester have voiced opposition to out-of-town development proposals they say could deal a “fatal” blow to the town centre.

Niall Dyer, managing director of Plinth 2000, which is flying the flag from Britain in export markets.

Suffolk treatment couch manufactuer Plinth 2000 has delivered its largest-ever export order.

Most read

Most commented

Topic pages