Vacant retail units

Vacant retail units

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Recent government announcements have caused a stir amongst the retail industry, as plans have been discussed to convert empty shops across the UK into cultural havens for community use.

£3M worth of funding, including grants up to £1K will be pumped into helping councils speed up planning applications and arrange short-term leases, and help the general public find creative ways to make use of the vacant retail units littering our high street and shopping centres.

The British Retail Consortium has responded by saying the only way to revive town centres is to remove the pressures facing retailers such as business rates and quarterly rent bills.

So, are such schemes the right move for a struggling industry in the economic downturn, or should the government have concentrated on helping retailers stay in business in the first place?