Expert advice to create a healthier high street
Ashford hopes to see more shops, more shoppers and more shopping in the town centre after being accepted onto an ‘intensive’ high street improvement scheme.
Ashford Borough Council (ABC) has a place on the third and final national Business in the Community’s Healthy High Streets programme.
The scheme provides corporate support through business expertise, mentoring, business development plans and resources.
Backed by big companies such as Boots, Marks & Spencer and Santander, these business will collaborate with local town teams to address a number of concerns.
These include issues around empty and unsightly properties, prioritising access and safety, creating high profile events to drive footfall, create pop-up shops and markets and improve customer service.
Jo Wynn-Carter, ABC’s regeneration manager, said: “I’m delighted that we have been successful and look forward to working with the stakeholders involved.
“This is a great opportunity for our businesses to have this expertise at their fingertips and on their doorsteps.
“We have already held our first meeting with the partners and cannot wait to develop ideas together throughout the next 12 months.”
High streets that have previously participated in the programme boast a 0.4% increase in footfall and a 5% drop in empty units.
Business in the Community, a charity headed by Prince Philip, claims the programme has created more than 1,700 jobs in 76 towns across the country since it’s launch.
The High Street