The value of retail sales only rose by 1.5 % over the Christmas period, which is under the rate of inflation. There's concern it could mean more businesses having to close in town centres like Dudley which already has many empty shops.
But Derbyshire and Nottinghamshire Chamber of Commerce says retailers are fighting back with innovative tactics to draw in customers.
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An eye specialist is the latest victim of a gang of muggers targeting cyclists on Birmingham's canals.
The 68-year-old will discuss his life story and be interviewed by a celebrity.
Two car collision led one of them to leave the road, travelling through a wall and a fence in the process.