HCLG Committee to conclude high street inquiry

Final appointment will take evidence from Jake Berry MP and Sir John Timpson.


The Housing, Communities and Local Government Committee will conclude its inquiry into the future of high streets and town centres on Tuesday 8th January.

The inquiry is currently examining the future role of the high street in contributing to the local economy and the health, cohesion and cultural life of the local community and the challenges faced amid changing demographic, technological and other trends in recent decades.

It also looks at how local areas are planning for the future of their high streets and town centres and creating the conditions to sustain them in the years ahead, as well as whether councils have the planning, licensing, tax raising and other tools needed to help local areas flourish.

In the closing statements (8th Jan) Jake Berry MP, Minister for the Northern Powerhouse and Local Growth; and Sir John Timpson, Chair of the Expert Advisory Panel on High Streets and owner of shoe repair chain Timpson, give evidence.

The Committee will question Berry on the key themes that have emerged over the inquiry and the effectiveness on government policy to support high streets.

This is likely to include the proposed reforms to planning regulations, the balance of the tax burden between online businesses and those with a high street presence, and the ability of local government to focus on the high street, given financial pressures and statutory obligations to provide other services.

The session will also ask Sir John Timpson about the findings and recommendations of the High Street Report, produced by the Expert Advisory Panel on High Streets, including proposals for the creation of a dedicated taskforce and fund to provide financial support, advocacy and share best practice and data.

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