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New Future for Scotland’s Towns

The report

In July 2020, the Scottish Government established a Review Group, chaired by Professor Leigh Sparks of the University of Stirling. The members of the Review Group were invited from a variety of relevant organisations and backgrounds. The Review Group was asked to:

“Review the progress and scope of the Town Centre Action Plan, published in response to the National Review of Town Centres conducted in 2013 by Malcolm Fraser and the Expert Advisory Group and produce a report detailing its findings with a revised vision for towns and a means to deliver that vision nationally and locally. The Review will place particular emphasis on recovering from the impact of COVID-19 on Scotland’s town centres, as well as on meeting Scotland’s climate change ambitions, identifying what further steps should be considered to make towns fit for all in Scotland”.

In July 2020, the Scottish Government established a Review Group, chaired by Professor Leigh Sparks of the University of Stirling. The members of the Review Group were invited from a variety of relevant organisations and backgrounds. The Review Group was asked to:

“Review the progress and scope of the Town Centre Action Plan, published in response to the National Review of Town Centres conducted in 2013 by Malcolm Fraser and the Expert Advisory Group and produce a report detailing its findings with a revised vision for towns and a means to deliver that vision nationally and locally. The Review will place particular emphasis on recovering from the impact of COVID-19 on Scotland’s town centres, as well as on meeting Scotland’s climate change ambitions, identifying what further steps should be considered to make towns fit for all in Scotland”.

Membership of the Review Group

Professor Leigh Sparks, Deputy Principal and Professor of Retail Studies at University of Stirling (Chair)

Sally Witcher, Chief Executive, Inclusion Scotland

Daisy Narayanan, Director of Urbanism, Sustrans

Phil Prentice, Chief Executive, Scotland’s Towns Partnership

Louisa Macdonell, Chief Executive, Development Trusts Association Scotland

David Cowan, Head of Regeneration Unit, Scottish Government

Irene Beautyman, Planning for Place, Programme Manager, Improvement Service & 2020 Convenor, RTPI Scotland

Pippa Coutts, Policy & Development Manager, Carnegie UK Trust

Angela Leitch, Chief Executive, Public Health Scotland

Professor Russel Griggs OBE, Chair, South of Scotland Enterprise

Barry McCulloch, Head of Policy (Scotland), Federation of Small Businesses

Robert Nicol, Chief Officer – Environment and Economy, COSLA

The contributions of Matt Lowther and Calum Lindsay are gratefully acknowledged when deputising for Angela Leitch and Robert Cowan.

 
 

https://www.futuretowns.scot/resources-context

The Review Group sought to capture some background evidence of opinion held by the general public across Scotland. This was done in two ways – through a (self-selecting) public survey, and through consideration of an opinion poll undertaken on a representative sample of the Scottish population. In addition, some public feedback was received through direct emails to the Review Group on their web-page at www.lovelocal.scot

The Review Group is grateful for the time taken by everyone who took part and engaged so pro-actively with its work.

 
Public Survey

Public opinion was surveyed on the subject of town centres, on a self-selecting survey basis, with participation encouraged through the Review Group, their contacts and partner organisations. Our analysis of the over 1500 responses received can be accessed here.

Opinion Polling

Public opinion polling work was undertaken by the Diffley Partnership, in an attempt to capture public affinity with their local high streets, with a particular focus on local shopping. The research was undertaken by Scotland’s Towns Partnership, but was considered relevant to the TCAP Review Group’s work. You can access the polling headline output here, and the supporting tables here.

 

https://www.futuretowns.scot/evidence

For media enquiries relating to the work of the TCAP Expert Review Group, please contact

peter @ messagematters.co.uk or chris @ messagematters.co.uk

 
 
News releases issued by the Review Group can be found below:
 
1) Call for evidence issued on 21st July 2020

2) Final report press release – issued on 2nd February 2021

 
 
 
News release announcing the formation of the Review Group can be found here.