Independent shops are returning to the UK's high streets, with the biggest surge taking place across the North West
Consumers are turning their back on chains and returning to small local shops, according to a new report into the state of Britain's high streets.
The High Street Tracker, compiled by business insurance broker Simply Business, found a 110pc increase in small, local retailers opening over the past five years.
The strongest small shop renaissance took place in the North West, with the number of new independent stores rising 18pc across the region last year and 89pc over a five-year period.
Greater London, the South East and the East Midlands were also showed strong growth in independent stores.
Northern Ireland showed the slowest growth, with just an 8pc increase in new small shops.