Future High Streets Forum

The Forum, comprised of retail leaders and industry experts, is working together to support and champion local high streets, sharing best practice and developing new solutions to the challenges faced at the local level across the country.

Role of the group

The Future High Street Forum is led by an executive board which brings together leaders across retail, property and business to better understand the competition our high streets and town centres across the country face.

The Forum will provide joint business and government leadership to better enable our high streets and town centres to adapt and compete in the face of changing consumer and social trends.

The Forum will advise the government in the formation and delivery of policies to support high streets and town centres, in the short and longer term.

The Forum will oversee 5 work streams:

  • restructuring high streets
  • digital
  • local partnerships
  • research
  • communications


Name Organisation
Jake Berry Minister for High Streets, Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government
Brigid Simmonds OBE Chief Executive, British Beer and Pubs Association
Dr Diane Savory OBE DL Chair, GFirst Local Enterprise Partnership
Elizabeth Fagan Senior Vice President and Managing Director, Walgreen Boots UK
Jason Cotta Managing Director, Costa Retail UK
James Lowman Chief Executive, Association of Convenience Stores
Melanie Leech Chief Executive, British Property Federation
Paula Vennells Chief Executive, The Post Office Network
Alex Jeffrey Chief Executive, M&G Real Estate
Mark Lloyd Chief Executive, Local Government Association
Helen Dickinson Chief Executive, British Retail Consortium
Ed Cooke Chief Executive, Revo

Terms of reference


On 31 May 2014 the forum published Good leadership: great high streets - a report drawing on the lessons learned from 4 of the Portas Pilots 2 years on.

National competition

The forum launched a new competition to help celebrate the Great British High Street.

The Great British High Street Awards are intended to recognise the progress some high streets are making, along with the diversity and services they provide to their local community.

The awards were open to town teams and recognised local partnerships (such as business improvement districts, town centre partnerships and community interest companies) across Britain.

The categories were:

  • Village – population between 500 and 2,500 residents
  • Local centre – precinct or parade of shops
  • Small market town – population of less than 10,000
  • Large market town – population between 10,000 and 30,000
  • Town centre – population of more than 30,000
  • City location – population of more than 200,000
  • Coastal community
  • London
  • Rising star – to recognise towns that are turning fortunes around
  • Best store manager or employee from a national retailer/organisation
  • Best store manager or employee from an independent/small business
  • Best market manager, operator, trader or farmer
  • Best under 25 years old
  • BestGBTwitterShop
  • People’s choice

The competition was held in 2014, 2015 and 2016:

Find out more information on the Great British High Street website.