Holidays fail to ignite footfall

Springboard registers fall in pedestrian traffic

The year on year decline in footfall of -1.5% last week was largely inevitable given the fact that Week 14 in 2018 comprised Easter Sunday and Easter Monday. However, on a positive note, the extent of the decline this year was mitigated by the significant annual drop of -9.2% last year, a consequence of poor weather over the Easter weekend and over the remainder of the week last year.

This should have made for a strong week this year, and in fact footfall improved by around 7.0% in all retail destinations from Week 14 in 2018. However, the poorer results for high streets and shopping centres of -3.3% and -1.8% were simply a consequence of more significant declines in these destinations last year than in retail parks (-11.2% in high streets, -8.0% in shopping centres but -6.5% in retail parks) which meant they had more ground to make up.

More disappointing is the fact that footfall declined significantly last week from the previous week, by -8.5%. In part this may be a consequence of some schools having already broken up for the Easter break, however, this was not countrywide and yet footfall declined significantly over the week across the board in all UK geographies. Indeed, in four areas the decline in footfall over the week exceeded -10.0% (the South West, Wales, West Midlands and Northern Ireland) and in all parts of the UK the drop was in excess of -5.0%.

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