I welcome additional funding for high streets in the Stroud Constituency and across the country.

I’ve been in Nailsworth & Dursley today for #HighStreetSaturday (mainly canvassing, drinking coffee & eating cake with Cllr Davies – but all part of joining in the campaign ). Watch the video below!

The funding coincides with High Street Saturday (16th March), which is a new national campaign day to celebrate the place of the high street at the heart of communities across the country. The Government is spending almost £10 million across England to improve local high streets.

This is all part of work to improve the quality of high streets across the country, helping to attract more residents and visitors so that local businesses can continue to thrive. I will continue to speak to local people and visit businesses around Stroud, the Valleys and Vale. I will also speak to our local Conservative councillors about pressing the councils to make good use of the Future High Streets Fund – a £675 million pot of money to help local areas modernise their high streets and town centres.

High streets have long been a place to bring communities together, a place for local people to access vital services and a place for businesses to thrive. We are rightly proud of having so many independent shops he Government recognises that it is becoming harder for businesses on high streets across the country to compete with out-of-town shopping centres and online retailers. That’s why the Conservatives in government have:

· Delivered over £10 billion of business rates support since 2016, including cutting small retailers’ bills by a third.

· Backed community leaders with £675 million of funding to help modernise their high streets and town centres.

· Relaxed planning rules to support new homes on the high street, transforming them into community hubs where people work, live and shop.

There is always more to be done but today’s funding will make it easier for local communities to enhance their local high streets, and make sure that they are places where the community can come together.