Re: Decline of high streets. I know it is fashionable to look back in time but there are some relevant points which should be considered on why this decline has come about.
Planning Policy Guidance Notes were issued in 1988 and 1996, supposedly to reduce the impact on town centres by out-of-town developments.
These have been disregarded by the planners – out-of-town shopping centres and retail parks have developed to saturation point with the consequent effect on the high street.
Consultants have also been only too eager to advise their retail clients that they need more space unnecessarily.
Retail development has followed the American model which has little identity and, in many cases, viability.
Not surprisingly town centres have lost their heart and their identity.
Sue will be a strong leader
I am delighted to see the Conservative Party on Preston City Council now has a female leader. At my recent Hon Aldermen ceremony, Coun Sue Whittam spoke as my sponsor and thanked me for being her mentor.
Well, how wonderful to see this has resulted in her being the new leader of the Conservative Party.
She will always have my support and advice and I do believe she will make a strong opposition leader, ready to scrutinise Labour decisions.
I sincerely hope this will result in female members being treated in a more respected way than previously. Have we actually improved in the ast 100 years? I guess we wait and see.