Throughout Britain local economies are being killed by various economic and political forces, with enormous human, social and environmental consequences. Can they be brought back to life?

We used to be a nation of shop-keepers.We have become a nation of shop-busters. Local shops and services – including corners shops, grocers, high-street banks, post offices, pubs, hardware stores – are
fast disappearing. The change is happening most visibly in villages and market towns, but just as dramatically in many larger urban and suburban areas.

Between 1995-2000, we lost roughly one-fifth of these vital institutions – the very fabric of our local economies. If current trends continue, we will lose a third of the tattered remains of that fabric over
the next ten years.

The result is Ghost Town Britain – an increasing number of communities and neighbourhoods that lack easy access to local banks, post offices, corner shops and pubs that provide the social glue that holds communities together.