Former Wickes and Iceland boss Bill Grimsey is leading a new independent review of Britain’s high streets and town centres, following a string of collapses and closures.
Grimsey is revisiting the topic after his first review in 2013, which was closely followed in Westminster, to factor in changes including Brexit and the 2017 business rates revaluation.
The new review will seek to identify successful retail regeneration projects implemented as a result of the first review and other reviews at the time.
It will also examine the costs, financing and operating models of towns, and look at what can be done to help prepare town centres and high streets for the future.
The report will be published on 4 July. Grimsey will collaborate with six other experts including Eva Pascoe, who was the first director for ecommerce at Topshop, and retail property specialist Matthew Hopkinson.
The authors will contact key stakeholders of towns and cities to gather evidence and opinion, as well as understand what town and community plans exist.
Grimsey said: “It is time to get this subject back on everyone’s agenda, otherwise we will continue to sleep-walk into the remainder of the 21st Century, leaving a legacy of ill thought-out town centres and high streets to the next generation.
“Evidence-based research is critical to how we manage our places and communities at both a local and national level. Change is rapid and change is constant.”
Interested parties can join a LinkedIn group called Grimsey Review 2 to submit feedback and evidence, as well as updates.