Today the Government has launched our new High Streets Strategy helping to turn our town centres into thriving places to work, visit and live as we recover from the pandemic.
As we build back better from the pandemic, we want to transform our high streets across the UK into the kind of vibrant places we will want to visit, work and call home for generations to come. That is why the Government has set out a new High Streets Strategy, that will deliver visible changes to local areas and communities across England – including through transforming derelict buildings, allowing permanent al fresco dining, cleaning up our streets, and supporting a renewed sense of community for current and future generations.
And alongside this strategy, the Government has also launched our £150 million Community Ownership Fund, allowing community groups to take over local pubs, theatres, shops and sports grounds at risk of closure - as well as details of the final 15 Town Deals, worth £335 million, that will drive local plans for growth, boost local economies, create jobs and help reshape the look and feel of local areas. This will help to secure the future of our high streets for the long term – supporting their recovery and helping to build them back better from the pandemic.
Additional measures that will be introduced in the Government’s long-term plan to support the evolution and regeneration of high streets include:
- New funding for ‘mini-Holland’ schemes across England to embed greener forms of transport, encouraging cycling and walking by installing segregated cycle lanes on main roads, expanding space for pedestrians and creating low-traffic neighbourhoods.
- A new taskforce to eradicate chewing gum from the streets, with gum producers investing £10 million over the next 5 years to help fund councils to clean up gum from the streets and support schemes to prevent people from littering in the first place.
- Councils will be encouraged to take a more hands-on approach to cleaning up graffiti, supported by £2 million in funding.
- Hospitality will also be given a boost with the streamlined pavement licensing system extended for 12 months across England so more shops, cafes and restaurants can make use of outdoor areas, with an intention to make this permanent.
- The Government will work to bring back street parties, making it easier for people to hold celebrations in their neighbourhood streets and picnics during national celebrations like the Commonwealth Games.
For more information on the Government’s strategy to regenerate high streets, including the Build Back Better High Streets policy paper and the Towns Deals, please visit: https://www.gov.uk/government/news/government-strategy-to-regenerate-high-streets.
New hospitality strategy to help pubs, bars and restaurants build back better from the pandemic
Today the Government has announced a new hospitality strategy to help pubs, bars and restaurants recover and thrive in the long term as we back better from the pandemic.
The pandemic has hit the hospitality sector hard – but as we ease restrictions and re-open our economy, businesses will need support to welcome back customers and recruit the staff they need. That is why the Government has today launched the first-ever hospitality strategy – focused on reopening, recovery and resilience – including measures such as making it easier to offer al fresco dining, boosting career choice and opportunity in hospitality, and reducing waste and plastic consumption.
To support the industry in its reopening, the Strategy sets out measures including highlighting opportunities in the hospitality industry to jobseekers through DWP’s dedicated work coaches and helping the sector address current recruitment challenges. This is on top of the continued support for businesses through the Government’s unprecedented £352 billion package of economic support and guidance this week to help ease them back to operating normally.
Recovery measures will boost business and consumer confidence and help the sector return to profitability. This includes working with the Government-owned British Business Bank and directly with lenders to support access to finance for hospitality firms so they can invest in their businesses.
It will be easier for pubs, restaurants and cafes on the high street to offer al fresco dining and serve more customers outside, with pavement licenses being extended and made permanent. Takeaway pints will also continue for another 12 months as the temporary permissions for off-sales of alcohol are extended in England and Wales, boosting sales.
The Government is also setting out ways to help the sector improve its resilience, including by making hospitality a career option of choice, boosting creativity, and developing a greener sector. Measures include:
- exploring options for vocational skills and training that support careers in the sector, including apprenticeships, bootcamps and other qualifications like a T-Level, and working with the sector to raise the profile of careers in hospitality
- supporting innovation and productivity by using the Government’s Help to Grow programmes to strengthen the sector’s digital and management skills, and bringing hospitality businesses together with universities and other innovators to support the next generation of hospitality start-ups
- helping the sector reduce emissions, including by cutting waste and single-use plastic consumption
This will build help our beloved pubs, restaurants, cafes and nightclubs thrive as we emerge from the pandemic – delivering better choice for consumers and protecting jobs and livelihoods.
For more information on the new hospitality strategy to help pubs, bars and restaurants build back better from the pandemic, including the Hospitality strategy: reopening, recovery, resilience policy paper, please visit: https://www.gov.uk/government/news/new-hospitality-strategy-to-help-pubs-bars-and-restaurants-build-back-better-from-the-pandemic.