News The low road: Small shops in town centres such as Dartford, Kent, are struggling

Government rejects claim by a new study that small businesses are being sacrificed to big out-of-town developments – in spite of Town Centre First policy

Protests as PM sacks Mark Prisk, Minister for High Streets

Mark Prisk is ousted just six months after setting up action group to revive struggling retailers

Mary Portas and Bill Grimsey in high street battle

Retail expert Mary Portas will mount a vigorous defence of her efforts to revitalise the high street in front of MPs today.

Technology should be embraced, not feared

There are more than 40,000 empty shops across the UK, and for many people a trip to the high street is not an enjoyable experience. But it could be so much better.

In the future shops might contain no stock but allow one to view it by means of holograms

Editorial: Time to rethink the high street

We do not want to end up, as much of America has done, with sterile suburbs

Mary Portas' plan 'could drain high street'

New rules designed to reinvigorate the country's high streets could see them overrun with betting shops and payday loan companies, the Local Government Association (LGA) has warned.

'Portas Pilots' high street update to be delayed

The Government appears to have delayed publishing a progress  report on the towns which received taxpayer money to revitalise their local high streets until later this year.

Profit warning: Dr Gloria Moss warns that high streets need to attract women

Shopping? It's all in the gender

Paul Bignell discovers a simple truth – women hold the key to the regeneration of the high street

'Personality' of towns is key factor in growth

Town centres must stop just trying to copy Oxford Street if they are to recover from the economic crisis, according to a Business Department-backed report to be launched this week.

Who on earth actually thinks Mary Portas is the solution to the crisis on our high streets?

Irreversible changes in consumer behaviour, disruptive technologies, and recession are together destroying our High Streets. I know, send for the Queen of Shops!

Editorial: Gimmicks won't save our high streets

News of a major British high street retailer announcing thousands of job cuts or going into administration comes round with depressing regularity. Earlier this week, the fashion chain Republic took the latter course, following Blockbusters, HMV and Jessops into a place of no return.

Editorial: Don't let HMV drown in the Amazon

Of the recent high street collapses, none has had quite the impact on the national consciousness as that of HMV. People remember where they were when they bought a record in a way that they don't when the purchase is a fridge, or even a camera, regrettable though the demise of both Comet and Jessops has been.

TV pick of the week: The Town Taking on China, Tuesday, 8pm, BBC2

Television Choices: Textile boss's bid to cushion the blow of recession

TV pick of the week: The Town Taking on China

Last Night's Viewing: Love Life, ITV1<br />Mary's Bottom Line, Channel 4

I think one big problem for the couples in Love Life, ITV's new romantic drama, is that they're absolutely lousy at buying Christmas presents for each other. We got not just one but two flashback unwrapping scenes in last night's opening episode, neatly employed by the writer Bill Gallagher to fill out the relationship dynamics but unfortunately only at the cost of making the characters look like complete idiots. Here's Joe, for example, unwrapping his gift from long-term girlfriend, Lucy. What has he got? Oh, that's so thoughtful. A memory foam pillow and a book of pudding recipes. Is it possible that Lucy is trying to send a message about domestication and nest-building? Never mind, perhaps Joe will do a bit better with his present for Lucy. No, seems not. She's got a pair of high-altitude climbing gloves, which is very clearly what adventurer Joe wants her to want, rather than what she actually does. Then again, Joe is a paragon of selfless generosity when compared to Dominic, whose wife tugs aside the decorative wrapping paper to find a brochure on adoption. Nice one, Dominic. There was an outside chance that she might forget her traumatic childlessness for at least one day of the year, but you've blown that.

We still love the shops

Despite reports of the high street's 'death spiral', young people still want to go out shopping. Gideon Spanier reports

Retail guru Wrigley says the high street is in a 'death spiral'

The former chairman of the fashion retailer New Look has said the high street is in an "death spiral" and has recommended re-classing empty shops for residential use.

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