Mike Ashley: How landlords can help save ‘dead’ high streets

“The mainstream high street, as we think about it today, is already dead,” according to Sports Direct boss Mike Ashley. In fact, it is so far gone, he said, it is “at the bottom of the swimming pool, dead”.

The murderer, the retail billionaire told MPs at Westminster’s Housing, Communities and Local Government Committee yesterday, is the internet.

Because department stores have been stuck with “prehistoric rents” set before online retailing began to rise, landlords “have to take their share of the pain”, he said.

Although some landlords were criticised for being “greedy”, Ashley said he