Latest data from retail experts Springboard has revealed that footfall across all UK retail destinations declined by -27.1% last week from the week before, which follows a drop of -23.2% in the previous week.
Despite the plea from the government for people across the UK to stay home to save lives, the footfall results varied by geography. In the South West, the East and West Midlands and North & Yorkshire the decline in footfall from the week before exceeded -35% and reached over -40% in the East Midlands and the South West.
However, in the South East and Greater London, which have the highest infection rates, footfall only declined by -8% and -10.7% respectively. However, in London this was driven by Outer London areas where the drop in footfall was only -6.8% versus -25.9% in Central London.
Despite this, the drop in footfall in Central London was still noticeably less than in regional cities outside of the capital where footfall declined by -39.6%.
In Wales and Northern Ireland footfall actually rose from the week before (by +10% in Wales and by +27.1% in Northern Ireland), although despite these increases footfall in both nations remains two thirds lower than last year.
Diane Wehrle, insights director at Springboard commented: “During the first full working week of 2021 and introduction of lockdown 3.0, the reduction in footfall across UK retail destinations from the week before was nearly as great as that during early November when England entered lockdown 2.0. The decline in footfall from last year is now around the same level as before non-essential retail stores reopened following lockdown 1.0 in June 2020.”