The British Retail Consortium has welcomed a £20 million aid package for retailers hit by the recent riots unveiled by the Government.
The package includes a temporary suspension of business rates for those firms that were affected by the riots, access to compensation for those stores that have inadequate insurance and offers of help for stores with cash flow issues.
“Our biggest fear is that otherwise successful retailers are pushed into insolvency by the events of this week. Suspending business rates on wrecked shops, flexibility on VAT collection and reassurance that shortfalls in insurance cover will be made up will all help substantially minimise that risk,” said the BRC’s director general Stephen Robertson.
However, he was keen to highlight the deeper issues affecting High Street retail: “Our high streets urgently need action which will revitalise them in the long-term. When the rubble has been cleared away and stores have reopened, there will be bigger, underlying problems still to address. We look forward to working with the Government to establish an action plan which will give our communities the vibrant, well-kept and successful high streets they deserve.”