Market town centres in England: Meeting the challenge of maintaining their contemporary relevance

Neil A. Powe, Trevor Hart, David Bek

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

16 Citations (Scopus)


In the context of improvements in mobility and changing patterns of retail, the importance of market town centres to rural residents has diminished, leaving many vulnerable to decline and their contemporary relevance questioned. Based on experience from 11 case-study towns located throughout England, this paper considers the prospects for regenerating the fortunes of market town centres. It is argued that this can be achieved through an integration of functional concerns with an appreciation of the desire to develop 'spaces of consumption' where there is focus on the leisure aspects of town centre visits. Although a number of the issues are beyond the direct remit of spatial planners, an awareness of the implications of development management and the context within which decisions are occurring is crucial.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)301-319
Number of pages19
JournalPlanning Practice and Research
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 7 Aug 2009
Externally publishedYes


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Geography, Planning and Development

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