High Streets Minister Jake Berry with Visa has confirmed the 40 high streets shortlisted across England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland in this year’s Great British High Street Awards, putting them in the running to win a £15,000 prize.
The announcement comes as new research has found that seven out of ten consumers say that shopping locally makes them feel happy, with over a third citing supporting local shops and knowing where their money is going as the main reason.
Spending time with friends and family and offering a sense of community were other reasons cited for why high streets make people happier. The research also reveals that half of consumers feel that their high street gives them a sense of pride in their local community.
High Streets Minister Jake Berry MP said: “Congratulations to the shortlisted nominees for this year’s Great British High Street Awards – the quality of the entries this year has been fantastic.
“High streets make people happier, and people want to see their hard-earned cash supporting the local economy. That is why we are celebrating those that go above and beyond to keep their high streets thriving for generations to come.
“Inspiring high streets like these will play a key role in the Government’s vision to boost local growth and level up our regions.”
Sundeep Kaur, Head of UK & Ireland Merchant Services at Visa, who commissioned the research, added: “We’ve seen some fantastic entries for this year’s Great British High Street Awards across both the Champion High Street and Rising Star categories. In particular, the desire to innovate stands out amongst this year’s entries, with high streets adapting to the challenges presented by a rapidly changing retail environment to find ways to thrive at a local level.
As our research shows, high streets play a vital role at the heart of communities, so this is a great opportunity for those communities with shortlisted high streets to show their support by placing their votes on the Great British High Street website.”
After a rigorous selection process led by a panel of independent judges, 12 high streets from the South East of England to the Scottish Highlands and Northern Ireland have been shortlisted in the Champion High Street category, which recognises the nation’s best high streets.
Additionally, 28 high streets have been shortlisted in the Rising Star category, identifying high streets which are taking the lead to adapt and diversify.
Shortlisted Champion High Streets
1. Hitchin Town Centre, Hitchin
2. Freeman Street, Grimsby
3. Belper Town, Belper
4. Turriff High Street, Turriff
5. Prestwick Main Street, Prestwick
6. Alness High Street, Ross-Shire
7. Narberth High Street, Narberth
8. Swansea High Street, Swansea
9. Treorchy High Street, Treorchy
10. Newtownards High Street, Newtownards
11. Enniskillen Town Centre, Enniskillen
12. Bow Street, Lisburn
Shortlisted Rising Star High Streets
1. Wellington, Telford
2. Daventry Town Centre, Northamptonshire
3.Northwich Town Centre, Cheshire
4. Willesden Green, London Borough of Brent
5. Sir Isaacs Walk & Eld Lane, Colchester
6. Rochdale Town Centre, Rochdale
7. Dalton Road, Barrow in Furness
8. Yarm High Street, Stockton-on-Tees
9. Tankerton High Street, Whitstable
10. Market Street, Ashby de la Zouch
11. Aberfoyle Main Street, Aberfoyle
12. Kempock Street, Gourock
13. Falkirk High Street, Falkirk
14. Lanark High Street, Lanark
15. Cowdenbeath High Street, Cowdenbeath
16. King Street, Castle Douglas
17. The Square, Kelso
18. Palace Street, Caernarfon
19. Carmarthen Town, Carmarthen
20. Llanelli, Llanelli
21. Mold High Street, Flintshire
22. Triangle House, Welshpool
23. Pembroke High Street, Pembroke
24. Caldicot Town Centre, Monmouthshire
25. Armagh City Centre, Armagh
26. Newry High Street, Newry
27. Broughshane Street, Ballymena
28. Carrickfergus High Street, Carrickfergus
People can vote for their favourite finalist at www.thegreatbritishhighstreet.co.uk, with the public vote accounting for 20 percent of the final scoring.
They will then have the chance to impress an expert judging panel as they seek to be crowned the UK’s Champion or Rising Star. The winners will be crowned at an awards ceremony in November.