Hitchin town centre is struggling. Despite the amazing efforts of our local businesses, and of Keith Hoskins and Tom Hardy from Hitchin Initiative, the pressures of online shopping and large out of town shopping centres are still weighing heavily. Our high streets need to adapt, and Government needs to help them do so. At the Budget, the Government set aside £650m to help – in its new Future High Streets Fund. Hitchin is well placed to take advantage of this funding, and I am working with the Government to see how a portion of this can help develop Hitchin’s town centre (including Churchgate!). The Minister responsible for the Future High Streets Fund, Jake Berry, is coming to Hitchin in the New Year to speak with me, local businesses and North Herts Council about Hitchin’s huge potential and the ways in which we can remake our High Street for the future.