Press Releases

High Streets Minister Confirmed for Heart of the Community 2017

ACS is delighted to announce that High Streets Minister Jake Berry MP will address retailers at the 2017 Heart of the Community Conference in October.

Jake Berry was appointed Parliamentary Under Secretary of State at the Department of Communities and Local Government on 14th June after retaining his Rossendale and Darwen seat in the 2017 General Election. His responsibilities include local growth policies, Local Enterprise Partnerships, community rights and high streets.

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Jobs Fall in Convenience Store Sector as Increasing Costs Take their Toll

The number of jobs in the UK convenience store sector has fallen for the second consecutive year as retailers are forced to adapt to cost increases in their businesses.

The 2017 Local Shop Report, released today, shows that there are now just over 370,000 jobs in the convenience sector – a reduction on both last year’s total of 390,000 and 2015’s total of 407,000.

Key findings from this year’s report include:

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SGF and ACS: Local Shops Would Be Damaged By Bottle Return Scheme

Following the announcement by the First Minister that the SNP administration will press ahead with introducing a bottle return scheme, retail representatives have warned that the scheme will either impose costs on local retailers if they are part of the scheme, or drive customers to large shops if smaller stores are exempt.

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Welsh Cross Party Group Launches Supporting Entrepreneurship Inquiry

The Cross-Party Group on Small Shops has today launched a new Inquiry on how to support entrepreneurs trading on high streets, shopping parades and in rural locations throughout Wales.

The Supporting Entrepreneurship Inquiry will seek evidence on the breadth and depth of the contribution that different types of entrepreneur make to the Welsh economy, looking at how to support these entrepreneurs to grow, invest and secure their long-term future.

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Government Responds to Green Paper on Corporate Governance Reform

The Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy has published a response to its Green Paper on improving corporate governance.

The response takes into account the views expressed in submissions to the Green Paper consultation, making further recommendations on the reforms to corporate governance that could be extended to large private companies as well as public companies. The main recommendations from the Government response include:

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Thousands of Businesses Still Waiting for Relief after Revaluation

Businesses waiting for rate relief after the 2017 revaluation should start receiving updated bills over the next few weeks after the Government set a deadline on software providers to update their platforms and help local councils generate the new bills.

The deadline of 21 August set by Local Government Minister Marcus Jones so that new bills can be issued to businesses that are due relief has now passed.

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Post Offices and Convenience Stores Have ‘Most Positive Impact’ on Communities

The 2017 Community Barometer has revealed that Post Offices and convenience stores are the nation’s favourite high street shops and services for the third year running.

The survey of UK consumers and local councillors across the UK showed that the top three services which have the most positive impact locally are post offices (1), convenience stores (2) and specialist food shops like butchers and bakeries (3).

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ACS: Carrier Bag Charge Must Be Extended to Smaller Stores in England

ACS has once again called on the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA) to include all stores in England in the 5p carrier bag charge.

Currently only businesses with more than 250 employees are included in the charging scheme, with smaller businesses exempt. However, in Wales and Scotland, the charge applies to all stores.

In the consultation period before the introduction of the charge in England, the Environmental Audit Committee recommended that the charge be universal following the model already in place in Wales.

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Tobacco Strategy: Local Approach Needed to Tackle Illicit Trade

ACS (the Association of Convenience Stores) has responded to the publication of the Government’s new Tobacco Strategy, calling for more powers to tackle the illicit trade locally in addition to the national measures set out in the document.

The Strategy commits to the following measures at a national level:

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