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High Street

Half term and warm weather boosts footfall

Whilst the greatest rises in activity were in coastal and historic towns, large city centres also benefited with an increase in footfall in Central London of 23.8% and 19.3% in city centres elsewhere in the UK

Footfall across UK retail destinations rose by 11.6% last week from the week before, including a 17.4% increase in high streets, according to the latest figures from Springboard.

Across last week Springboard also found a 8.7% increase in footfall in shopping centres and a 2.3% increase in retail parks.

In coastal and historic town centres, the uplift in activity was “significantly greater”; 37.1% in coastal towns and 24.8% in historic towns.

Springboard also revealed that as visitors “flocked” to resorts, the south-west particularly benefited, with a rise in footfall that was greater than in any other part of the UK of 18.8% overall, and 30.8% in high streets.

Whilst the greatest rises in activity were in coastal and historic towns, large city centres also benefited with an increase in footfall in Central London of 23.8% and 19.3% in city centres elsewhere in the UK.

This meant that the gap in footfall from 2019 narrowed to -39.5% in Central London and just -12.9% in regional cities across the UK; the most modest annual decline in footfall since before the pandemic.

Some visitors stayed local, however, the increases in footfall were more modest at +10.4% in Outer London and +9.7% in market towns across the UK.

Diane Wehrle, Insights Director at Springboard, said: “A combination of the late May bank holiday, incredible weather and the school half term holiday had a hugely beneficial effect on customer activity in UK retail destinations last week; it not only led to the greatest weekly increase in footfall since the reopening of non-essential retail in April, but also the most modest annual decline since the start of the pandemic.

“Inevitably visitors wanted to be outside to enjoy the weather, so by far the greatest benefit was seen by high streets, where the rise in footfall from the week before was double that in shopping centres, and eight times that in retail parks.”

She added: “Staycations clearly fuelled an increase in footfall in coastal towns which surpassed that in any other type of high street, and a rise in footfall in high streets in the south-west that was nearly double the increase in high streets across the UK and in Greater London.

“The fact that the bank holiday occurred a week earlier than in the previous two years, meant that footfall in both coastal and historic towns was actually higher last week than in the same week in 2019…There was still a significant rise in footfall in Central London and in other regional cities across the UK, whilst the most modest increases once again occurred in more local high streets.”

 

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