Thousands of independent retailers were campaigning to scrap quarterly rent ­reviews and bring in a monthly system this week, ahead of today&'s quarterly payout.

The British Retail Consortium is leading the charge, claiming the practice of demanding shop rents three months in advance every quarter was putting too much pressure on retailers.

BRC director general Kevin Hawkins said: "At a time when retailers are ­being squeezed by rising rents, rates, service charges and utility bills - and shop prices are actually falling - this costly, centuries-old practice takes some justifying."

It comes as Farmfoods, top of The Grocer Top 50 independent retailers chart, looked set to close a store in Renfrew, Scotland, due to rent hikes. But it has now renegotiated the rent with the landlord and the store will remain open.