More than 40 businesses gathered this week with the Chamber of Commerce to hear about the future of the high street.

The Richmond Council sponsored Future High Street Strategy, led by town hall's finance and economic development teams, outlined small retailer relief available for businesses in premises under £51,000 in value.

The session continued with an overview of the council's finances and a Sunday Times panel of micro and corporate retailers discussing their vision of the future high street.

Members of also shared their insights on how small businesses can thrive in the heart of the community.

Anne Newton, chamber CEO, said: “Successful bricks and mortar retailers such as our Panel respond to online giants such as Amazon with compelling niche retailing experiences, digitally connected where appropriate, to deliver seamless superb service with flexible opening times to suit shoppers, so that communities can respond and shop.

"Thanks to The Mayor, Richmond Council, RTT, Sunday Times Rich List, ION, Sheraton Interiors, One One Four, WholeFoods Market, Save The for their incredible contributions.”

Cllr Geoff Acton responded on behalf of the Council to comments regarding flexibility in development designations.

“We have listened and agree wholeheartedly with the concerns raised today and in recent months by retailers, landlords and the community and are reviewing our polices to ensure our future high streets are 'fit for purpose' - a space for communities to meet, shop and relax," he said.

Chamber Upcoming Chamber Business Events - All welcome

Wednesday, 8th May 6pm - Chamber Spring Party at KissNMakeup Boutique, Twickenham: Relaxed business networking, bubbles, canapés + optional skin refresh, massage, facial, makeover consultations and goody bags

Thursday, 16 May 6pm – Richmond Business Awards 2019 Launch Drinks and Canapés with Richmond Mayor at The Wharf Restaurant, Teddington

Monday, 20th May 930am - Chamber Coffee Opening Launch Event with Zac Goldsmith MP in Richmond High Street with relaxed business networking and celebrate a successful local retailer startup!

Thursday, 23rd May 6pm - Chamber Speciality Carron Lodge Cheese and Wine + Chilled Business Networking at The Crown with MP Sir Vince Cable and Richmond Mayor - The Pearmain Crown Team will update us on their business’ progress

Friday, 24th May 9am - Chamber Breakfast at The Marriott, Twickenham Stadium with Richmond Mayor and the Bank of England’s Economic Outlook with relaxed business networking

Thursday, 13th June 9am - Chamber Breakfast at Le Salon Privé, St Margaret’s, Twickenham with MP Sir Vince Cable and Richmond Mayor - A Brexit Update for Businesses with relaxed business networking

Friday, 21st June 10am - Chamber Coffee Morning with The Mayor and Sir Vince Cable at The Hive, Twickenham High Street: Relaxed business networking, arts and crafts retail experience, learn more about RHLT and share the CSR opportunities - all welcome!

Monday, 4th July 6pm- Chamber Summer Party at Volta Spa, St Margaret’s, Twickenham: Champagne, Canapes, Head Massage and Elemis Gift Bag at Volta’s Spa & Beauty - all welcome!

Tuesday, 16th July 900am at Royal Mid Surrey Golf Cub- Chamber Breakfast with MP Sir Vince Cable: Brexit Update from the heart of Westminster and a chance to quiz Twickenham’s MP with relaxed business networking

Tuesday, 13th August 900am - Chamber Breakfast at Côte, Richmond Hill Street with relaxed business networking and Richmond Business Awards insights for those businesses wishing to sponsor or enter this year...Black Tie Awards Gala Dinner Friday November 15th, 630pm at RFU Twickenham Stadium’s stunning new East Stand The Lock