Skip to main content
Guiding you to a better future

Search

For a successful business, you need a viable business idea, the skills to make it work and the funding. Discover whether your idea has what it takes.

Forming your business correctly is essential to ensure you are protected and you comply with the rules. Learn how to set up your business.

It is likely you will need funding to start your business unless you have your own money. Discover some of the main sources of start up funding.

Businesses and individuals must account for and pay various taxes. Understand your tax obligations and how to file, account and pay any taxes you owe.

Businesses are required to comply with a wide range of business laws. We introduce the main rules and regulations you must comply with.

Learn why business planning is an essential exercise if your business is to start and grow successfully, attract funding or target new markets.

Marketing matters. It drives sales and helps promote your brand and products. Discover how to market your business and reach your target customers.

Some businesses need a high street location whilst others can be run from home. Understand the key factors from cost to location, size to security.

Your employees can your biggest asset. They can also be your biggest challenge. We explain how to recruitment and manage staff successfully.

It is likely your business could not function without some form of IT. Learn how to specify, buy, maintain and secure your business IT.

Few businesses manage the leap from start up to high-growth business. Learn what it takes to scale up and take your business to the next level.

Mixed fortunes for UK high streets in 2019

5 November 2019

A new study has identified the UK cities whose high streets are growing the fastest and those that are declining the most.

The analysis, conducted by Asktraders, looked at ATMs, bank branches, retail store closures and ONS retail growth data over the course of 2019. The findings show that across the UK, over 1,200 high street stores have closed during the first half of 2019 with over 5,000 in the past 12 months in the UK.

Bucking the trend, Peterborough in Cambridgeshire has the UK's most thriving high street, with 1% retail growth and 30 new ATMs opening over the past 12 months. Since 2015, only 11% of bank branches in the town have closed down.

In contrast, the worst performing high street is Poole in Dorset, with -4% retail growth and where there have been two bank branch closures and an estimated 48 stores closing in the past two years.

The top ten best performing high streets are: Peterborough, Huddersfield, Coventry, Hull, Slough, London, Northampton, Luton, Basildon and Milton Keynes. The worst performers are: Poole, Blackpool, Warrington, Manchester, Swindon, Edinburgh, York, Stockport, Burnley and Sheffield.

Key findings of the report include:

  • Over 6,000 ATMs have closed between January 2018 and August 2019, representing 300 per month and a reduction of 12%;
  • Over 1,100 bank branches have closed in the UK since 2018; RBS, NatWest and Barclays are amongst the worst hit.

"The UK high street has been weathering tough trading conditions with many UK retailers dropping by the wayside," said Steve Miley, senior market analyst at AskTraders. "Traditional retail store closures are on the up as businesses grapple with a weak consumer in the face of Brexit uncertainty, the unabated rise of ecommerce, higher costs and changing tastes."

There are going to be winners and losers, he added. "High street retailers with inflexible business models that have failed to adapt to their changing environment are and will be the most noticeable casualties. Big names have just vanished from our high street and there will certainly be more to come.

"The challenges that the high street is facing aren't going anywhere fast. This will be a case of the survival of the fittest. Those retailers that can evolve whilst still giving their customers exactly what they want could have a lot to gain."

Written by Rachel Miller.

Stay up-to-date with business advice and news

Sign up to this lively and colourful newsletter for new and more established small businesses.

Contact us

Make an enquiry