High Street set for change

12:16 22 February 2013

Honiton Town Council discusses internet competition, business rates and rents.

The future of the High Street has been questioned by councillors in Honiton.

During a meeting of Honiton Town Council, concerns were raised surrounding internet competition, changing shopping trends and the problems of high business rates and rents faced by businesses in the town.

Councillor Liz Tirard said: “Business rates and rents are two major problems for High Street businesses.

“Is there anything East Devon District Council can do to help?”

Councillor Mike Allen added: “I think the whole business of high streets is far more complex than business rates.

“I am always open to looking at re-adjusting business rates and financial situations.

“There are various schemes that different councils have.”

He explained that commercial rents are not always set locally and suggested businesses look closely at their rents and rates. Cllr Allen also suggested that councils needed to work closely with businesses and the chamber of commerce to fight wrong evaluations and discuss reasonable rates with owners.

He said: “To be frank, the problem with the high street is so much bigger - businesses have got to make themselves viable so that rents can be paid.”

Cllr Tirard raised concerns regarding empty business units, particularly in Lace Walk and felt something should be done to stop properties being empty for long periods of time.

Councillor John Zarczynski said: “More and more have turned to shopping on the internet simply because of the prices and choice.

“You can go on the internet and buy almost anything.”

He added: “As much as I support the High Street, it would be a terrible shame to see it disappear – we have to brace ourselves, the fact is the High Street is going to change dramatically over the next five years.

“I don’t think there is a lot we can do to save the High Street in its present form.”

Cllr Zarczynski felt things needed to be made easier for shopkeepers by reducing overheads, for example.

He said: “Shopping trends are changing.”

Cllr Allen questioned internet sales on certain types of products, such as a new pair of shoes, as, he said, it is not always easy for some shoppers to find the correct size and fitting.

He added: “The High Street must change and it will have to change dramatically, there is no doubt about it, and we should be there to help our chamber of commerce.”

2 comments

  • Look like a Great meeting, but there is nothing we don't all ready know.. It has been the same since the baby boom of Internet shopping in 2004. Glad to see that Our councillors are catching up. Have you made a "concrete " decision ? Or have you just passed the ball to the district council. Disappointing .

    Report this comment

    Paultamworth

    Monday, February 25, 2013

  • Look like a Great meeting, but there is nothing we don't all ready know.. It has been the same since the baby boom of Internet shopping in 2004. Glad to see that Our councillors are catching up. Have you made a "concrete " decision ? Or have you just passed the ball to the district council. Disappointing .

    Report this comment

    Paultamworth

    Monday, February 25, 2013

The views expressed in the above comments do not necessarily reflect the views of this site

Other News Stories

12:55
The Thelma Hulbert Gallery

Honiton’s Thelma Hulbert Gallery (THG) has been announced as the winner in a competition to bring a top contemporary artist to town.

Read more
09:02
Resplendent in his robes, Town Crier Derek Wenn ensured the Colyton Tractor run had a fitting send off. Ref mha 7902-22-15SH. Picture: Simon Horn

More than 120 agricultural vehicles take part in this year’s charity fundraiser

Read more
Yesterday, 18:30
Computer

Anyone who can help should get in touch with steering group vice-chairman Jackie Wadsworth.

Read more
Sunday, May 24, 2015
Dan Lavery of the Devon Freewheelers. Ref exe 1231-13-15SH. Picture: Simon Horn

Dan Lavery is determined Devon Freewheelers will help save lives – as a Belfast ‘hidden hero’ undoubtedly helped saved wife Shelley’s life in 2005.

Read more
Saturday, May 23, 2015
Sam Bader

Dad-of-one Sam Bader, 28, who grew up in Ottery St Mary, supports Devon Freewheelers by sponsoring one of the motorbikes, Bravo One.

Read more
Friday, May 22, 2015
EDDC's Knowle HQ. Ref shs 7705-15-12SH Picture: Simon Horn

Independent councillors call for extraordinary meeting to debate the office relocation

Read more
Friday, May 22, 2015
Checks were carried out by police at Honiton Tesco as part of a drive to cut down on defective vehicles. PC Steve Lee with Tesco staff Michael Williams, Mark Dowell, Angela Lockyer and Naomi Curtis. Ref mhh 6528-21-15AW. Picture: Alex Walton

The activity was part of Operation Mascot, the rural East Devon policing sector’s initiative to tackle travelling criminals, address driving offences and improve road safety.

Read more
Friday, May 22, 2015
First year Sixth Form students Mikey Rose, Brad Burraston and Tom Broderick

Axe Valley Community College sixth formers selected to take part in for philosophy, politics and economics programme

Read more
Friday, May 22, 2015
Dan Lavery of the Devon Freewheelers. Ref exe 1256-13-15SH. Picture: Simon Horn

Devon Freewheelers founder Daniel Lavery will do whatever it takes to keep his lifeline service on the road so other families can receive the same help and care that saved his wife’s life.

Read more
Thursday, May 21, 2015
Seaton Wetlands

Money raised will to towards the management of the nature reserve

Read more

Local Weather

Partly Cloudy

Partly Cloudy

max temp: 17°C

min temp: 5°C

Most Read News

Great British Life


Great British Life
Family notices
Advertise in the paper
Submit a Story
Submit a Story
Buy Photos
Competitions
iwitness24
Facebook
Twitter
Google Plus Page
Family Notices 24

Digital Edition

Image
Read the Midweek Herald e-edition today E-edition



Honiton's trusted business finder