High Street

Footfall declines 7% in post-Easter slump

Despite the drop in footfall from the week before, the gap from the 2019 footfall level narrowed to -12.8% from -15.4% in the week before last

Footfall across UK retail destinations declined by -7% last week from the week before, with a drop of -10.2% in shopping centres, and -6.9% in retail parks, according to Springboard.

High streets however benefited from activity on Easter Sunday which meant that the drop in footfall was more modest at -5.5%.

Excluding Sunday, the average week on week % change was largely the same in both high streets and shopping centres (-4.5% and -4.3%), whilst in retail parks it was much stronger at -0.6%, supported by an increase in footfall of +8.8% on Easter Monday.

Shopping centres performed poorly between Monday and Thursday, with footfall over those four days averaging -7.6% from the week before, versus -4.1% in high streets. However, shopping centres bounced back on Friday and Saturday, with a rise over the two days that averaged +2.3% versus a -5.3% drop on high streets and -0.2% in retail parks.

Despite the drop in footfall from the week before, the gap from the 2019 footfall level narrowed to -12.8% from -15.4% in the week before last.

Footfall last week was also +12.7% higher than in the same week last year, which was only the second trading week post the end of lockdown 3 when restrictions regarding mask wearing and social distancing were still in place.

Diane Wehrle, insights director at Springboard, said: “The overall result for last week was significantly impacted by drops in footfall on both Easter Sunday – when stores were closed – and on Easter Monday, when only retail parks recorded an increase in footfall, most probably driven by shoppers restocking on food and groceries following the Easter weekend.

“Over the rest of the week, despite the continuation of the dry and sunny weather over much of the UK, footfall declined from the week before on every day other than Tuesday – a sharp contrast with the week before last when footfall had increased every day in the lead up to Easter, and also on Good Friday and Easter Saturday.”

She added: “As they had been during Easter week, shopping centres were the hardest hit. They underperformed high streets and retail parks from Monday to Thursday, although they then outperformed them both on Friday (although still negative) and then rebounded into positive territory on Saturday which contrasted with a drop in high street footfall.”

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