> The death of the "high street" is due to the clone-a-shop retail outlets.
And councils putting in parking meters, plus constantly raising business rates as more and more businesses decide they've had enough and get the fuck out of Dodge.
A classic example was Dorking: The town axed half hour parking charges and doubled the 1 hour rates on the basis that they needed the income (which is actually illegal, parking revenue is not to be used as general income) - the end result was that parking revenue HALVED. Most businesses reported a downturn on sales too. People just go where the parking is easy and free instead - it's called voting with your wallet.