By Marcus Leach

A Government promise to review the rules on night time deliveries is welcome news which could contribute to improving the viability of some retail locations.

In its high-street rescue plan 21st Century High Streets, the British Retail Consortium (BRC) highlighted accessibility - both for shoppers and retailers needing to get goods to stores - as a key issue.

Congestion is a significant cost for retailers yet they are often prevented from supplying stores at off-peak times by delivery curfews.

"This review is a welcome response to our calls for greater flexibility on deliveries. Retailers literally drive for efficiency but too often outdated bans stop them delivering at night. That adds to costs and actually forces them to add to the congestion they want to avoid," British Retail Consortium Director General Stephen Robertson said.

"Many of these restrictions have been in place for years and fail to take account of advances in technology that make vehicles and the unloading process much quieter.

"We look forward to working with the Government, Freight Transport Association and others to establish new guidelines that contribute to improving the viability of retail locations, at a time of really tough trading conditions, while also working for local residents."

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