In 2012 Ashford in Kent became a "Portas Pilot Town". A government scheme to rejuvenate high streets, backed by retail expert Mary Portas.

The Rye Agency were commissioned to develop "Love Ashford" - one of the flagship products for Ashford's rejuvenation. Described as the UK's first digital high street, Love Ashford is a network of independent and retail chains publishing news, offers, events and more.

It's goal is to encourage a sense of community and pride for Ashford's town centre and to increase foot fall.

Government minister Brandon Lewis said of Love Ashford, "The Love Ashford website is an excellent example of how digital technology can be used to promote the high street. I would encourage all businesses in Ashford to sign up and be part of this excellent opportunity to boost their trade in the town centre".

Mary Portas also praised the website, "Ashford have the right vision and instead of running scared of the web, they know its power to help. Local retailers are loading their content for free. They have their own page to promote what they do and they can integrate all of their social media".

As well as the website development, we created the Love Ashford brand - a simple emblem of an "a" becoming a heart.