Mary Portas hits out at government ‘sh*t show’ as high street businesses fear inflation

Mary Portas, the retail expert and former government advisor, issued a forthright verdict on the lack of leadership in Downing Street during the cost-of-living crisis, as new research revealed high street businesses see inflation as a bigger threat than Covid. “We’ve just got a sh*t show going on now with central government,” she told the Standard. “We’re absolutely on hold at the biggest proper crisis these businesses see. We are talking about inflation. We’ve got a couple of candidates vying to be the next prime minister. I find it ridiculous. Look what we did during Covid which helped with the crisis. This is not that much different.” Portas was speaking as the latest Retail Trend Report produced by Ankorstore -- a wholesaler she works with that helps small shops achieve scale and maximise their buying power -- found that 92% of retailers think the British high street is suffering. The cost-of-living crisis and inflation was seen as a threat by 74% of respondents, while only 45% thought Covid still represents a problem. The popularity of buying locally surged during the pandemic and survived the end of lockdowns. Ankorstore’s research found two-thirds of retailers said customers remain keen to shop within...

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