Footfall across UK retail destinations continued to strengthen in June, moving to -22.2% below the 2019 level from -27.5% in May, the strongest result since the start of the pandemic, according to retail analytics expert Springboard’s latest Footfall Monitor and Insights.
The largest gains in footfall were made in high streets which continued to benefit from the reopening of indoor hospitality, and which improved by a third in June.
Diane Wherle, Springboard’s marketing and insights director, commented: “The gains were largely made in the first week of the month, which included the early spring Bank Holiday when the weather was hot and coincided with the half term school break.
“In that week alone, footfall across all destinations improved to -14.5% below the 2019 level from -26.8% in the week before. Looking geographically, in the South West – which this year has been the “go to” destination for staycations – footfall in the first week of the month was just -1.8% below the 2019 level.
“The strong footfall seen in the first week of the month inevitably created misplaced optimism as over the remainder of June footfall worsened incrementally each week.
“This was undoubtedly a reflection of the lack of impetus for consumers to shop following the government’s announcement in the delay of ‘freedom day’ until 19 July.
“This was heightened by the continued restrictions and limitations on overseas travel, which also reduced the need to shop for summer fashion in advance of overseas holidays.
“Moving into July, however, the opportunity for bricks and mortar retail to attract back consumers is significant.
“The removal of restrictions set for 19th July and the greater freedoms this offers – coinciding with the school summer holiday period – is likely to deliver a fresh incentive for consumers to visit bricks and mortar destinations. “