Portas shopping bid could see town feature in TV show

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HEMEL Hempstead’s shops could be part of a new television programme if a bid for funding promoted by retail guru Mary Portas is successful.

If the town fights off competition from others up and down the country it will join 11 shopping destinations in a business-boosting pilot project, which will see them share a pot of funding totalling £1million.

And the self-styled Queen of Shops has just announced she will front a programme tracking the progress of three of the successful towns.

In a further boost the government has announced that due to overwhelming interest a second project to help a further 12 towns will be launched in June.

Hemel Hempstead’s bid, submitted by the Town Centre Partnership, has been backed by 92 per cent of the retailers in Marlowes and 85 per cent of landlords.