Footfall drops for first time in seven weeks

Latest data from retail experts Springboard has revealed that footfall across UK retail destinations declined by -0.7% last week from the week before, but results varied across the three destination types.

Whilst footfall declined by -3.3% in high streets, it rose by +0.9% in shopping centres and +3.2% in retail parks.

Despite footfall in high streets declining overall, in regional cities outside of London it rose by +2.3% whilst dropping by -10.9% in Central London and -8.7% in Outer London. Apart from London, the most severe declines in high street footfall occurred in the East, Midlands and North of England which experienced poorer weather conditions than other parts of the UK.

Diane Wehrle, insights director at Springboard commented: “For the first time in seven weeks footfall in UK retail destinations declined from the week before. However, the drop was a marginal one, and was driven wholly by high streets, whilst activity in both retail parks and shopping centres continued to increase. Visits to retail parks increased by three times as much as in shopping centres, which may well have been a result of parents shopping for school clothing and items in large food stores in the run up to the return to the classroom.

“Whilst the ongoing Lockdown is the major influencer in shopping activity levels, weather still plays a part; footfall in all three destinations types rose significantly over the first three days of the week, but declined from Wednesday onwards when the weather worsened in the second half of the week.”

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