UK retail Footfall languishes ahead of ‘Freedom Day’

Latest data from Retail Experts Springboard reveals that footfall across UK retail destinations rose by +0.9% last week from the week before.

The uplift varied across the three destination types with all of the increase coming from high streets where footfall rose by +3.3% versus declines of -0.8% in retail parks and -2.2% in shopping centres.

The uplift in high street footfall meant that the gap from the 2019 footfall level narrowed very slightly to -24.9% from -25.8% last week, although once again it was high streets that drove this.

In high streets 2021 vs 2019 footfall last week shifted from -33.3% to -30.5% whilst in both retail parks and shopping centres the gap from 2019 widened.

Diane Wehrle, insights director at Springboard commented: “Last week footfall across UK retail destinations stagnated in overall terms, with very little uplift from the week before.

“Despite this, there was a glimmer of hope for the hospitality industry, as the most gains in footfall were made post 5pm as shoppers took the opportunity provided by hot weather to enjoy hospitality venues.

“Following ‘Freedom Day’ today, this week we are anticipating for footfall to rise by +19.7% across the UK, as Covid restrictions such as face coverings and social distancing, are no longer mandatory in England.

“With summer holiday commencing and many opting for a Summer Staycation in the UK, footfall will continue to rise throughout July and into August as many look to enjoy the good weather. “

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