Understanding Future Users of the High Street

As the demographics of high street users change, this online learning helps place leaders appreciate and understand the needs of young people - and how they should help shape future plans for towns and cities.

Introduced by Joe Barratt, Task Force Board Member and Co-Founder of the Teenage Market, this online learning analyses young people and their attitudes and behaviours in relation to the high street. The learning is aimed at place managers in local authorities, BIDs and LEPS, and other place stakeholders such as community groups, businesses and young people themselves.

Learning outcomes

  • Understand existing and changing demographics and the important of the needs of young people now and in the near future.

  • Understand young people in the context of consumer behaviour, including consideration of retail trends, social values, environmentalism, technology and communication, health/well-being, leisure and recreation

  • Understand and be able to convey the value of having young people participate in shaping future plans for the high street

  • Be prepared to engage younger people in decision-making in a meaningful way.

Watch the online learning

Further reading

  1. Where are the young people? They’re waiting and waiting…
    by Commonplace
    Read now

  2. Voice, Opportunity, Power: Youth Engagement Toolkit
    by Grosvenor Britain and Ireland, TCPA, ZCD Architects, Sport England
    Read now

  3. High Street 2030: Achieving Change
    by Institute of Place Management
    Read now

Practical examples and case studies

The Teenage Market

The Teenage Market gives young people a free platform to showcase their creative talents. It’s all about supporting the next generation of market traders and bringing an influx of energy, vibrancy and diversity to towns across the UK. Their events are the perfect opportunity for markets to connect with their town’s population of young people, by providing a platform for them to be entrepreneurial, trial new business ideas and sell creative products. 

House of Vans

The House of Vans is a permanent venue opened by the Footwear and apparel brand Vans within the 150 year old brick arches at Waterloo station in London to promote and encourage “creative expression”. The House of Vans has been described as a “physical manifestation of the culture and creativity at the heart of the Vans brand”, as it combines skateboarding, art, film and music together to create a truly unique and interactive space.

International House Brixton

International House opened in Brixton in Autumn 2018 as a home for entrepreneurs and locals unlike any other - facilitated by a BuyGiveWork initiative where space is given away when space is bought. The building is spread over 12 storeys, with five ‘Buy’ floors featuring a range of professional workspace options to suit all budgets, and five ‘Give’ floors which provide free space for social enterprises and initiatives which promote diversity, inclusiveness and innovation, and to those who are at the first stages of their business journey and can’t afford to pay for workspace.

Wigan Youth Zone

Wigan Youth Zone is a purpose built, state-of-the-art youth facility in Wigan town centre which opened in June 2013. It offers young people from across Wigan the opportunity to meet friends, have new experiences, learn new skills and access the support they need to develop and achieve their potential. The Youth Zone is open to all young people across Wigan aged from 8 to 21 and, with almost 15 dedicated areas to choose from, there’s something for everyone to enjoy.