Non-retail offer - 237 'Vital and Viable' Factors

As part of our series on vital and viable high streets, the High Streets Task Force is presenting 'evidence on a page' summaries of over 200 factors that influence the success of high streets. Here we address non-retail offer; non-retail offer refers to the opportunities in a centre beyond retail. It includes bars and restaurants; leisure, entertainment, arts, and culture; business and employment; education; health services; and housing. Centres that have an attractive non-retail offer, become places that are interesting to spend time and live in and can result in economic prosperity.

Date added 17 November 2021
Last updated 17 November 2021

Both a centre’s shopping provision and non-retail offer are key in attracting people into the centre. Diverse mix of non-retail opportunities in a centre is thus integral to ensuring its vitality and viability, and a lack of it can lead to customer dissatisfaction. Although independent retail remains active in many centres, the overall number of stores has been falling consistently for many years. Therefore, it is important to understand what else a centre can offer apart from retail. A diverse mixture of retail and non-retail offerings in a centre can result in economic benefits due to, for example, encouraging linked shopping trips and greater ‘dwell time’. Furthermore, it can extend the offer of the centre to a larger section of the community and can extend the economic base by offering employment and business opportunities.

Non-retail offer is one of 237 factors that have been identified as influencing the vitality and viability of the high street.

For more information and further reading, download the pdf 'evidence on a page'. The page contains information about this factors place within the 237 factors identified and: whether it is a component factor of one of 25 'vital and viable' priorities; how the factor scores in terms of influence, place management control, and priority.

To read more about vital and viable high streets, see