ACS lobbies MPs to save Britain’s high streets


ACS (the Association of Convenience Stores) has taken its campaign for an amendment to the Localism Bill to key MPs who sit on the Committee that will scrutinise and amend the new law.

In the brief sent to the Public Bill Committee, who meet for the first time today, ACS has called for the introduction of a statutory duty to promote sustainable high streets. In the brief, the Association has also called for the new planning framework to include a requirement of developers to fund external and independent analysis of their proposals.

ACS chief executive James Lowman said: “Our campaign is really taking off. With several MPs already speaking up for sustainable high streets in the second reading debate, we are now looking for those on this crucial committee to take this on and change the law.

“Acting now will ensure our high streets are secure for the next generation. Without this law, we are in danger of allowing an out of town supermarket free-for-all that could cause irreparable damage to the very communities that are the heart of the Big Society agenda.

“Effective planning law is the only defence for those local communities faced with overwhelming pressure from aggressive supermarket developers. By putting the duty to promote sustainable high streets in law, Councils will have the legal authority they need to stand up for high streets and ensure that developers invest there and not out of town.”