Oct 18, 2021
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UK footfall fails to grow, but recovery in London, other cities continues

Oct 18, 2021

Despite continuing worries about supplies of Christmas goods, British consumers appear to be holding back from diving too enthusiastically into Christmas shopping this early in the season.

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The latest data from specialist footfall tracker Springboard on Monday showed that footfall across UK retail destinations actually declined (albeit marginally) last week from the week before.

It was down 0.7% and remained flat in high streets while retail parks saw a decrease of 1.5% and shopping centres fell by 1.6%. In fact, the drops in retail parks and shopping centre were widespread, with declines in all but one UK region.

That said, footfall rose in Central London (+2.7%) and regional cities (+2.1%) as the return to the office continued to accelerate.

The gap compared to 2019 was 14% last week, although footfall was 28.1% higher than this time last year.

Diane Wehrle, Insights Director at Springboard said: “Last week UK footfall was flat in high streets, but small declines in activity in both retail parks and shopping centres suggests that discussions in the media around the impact of supply issues on the availability of Christmas products have not yet impacted consumer behaviour. 

“In parallel, indications are that the trickle back to the office is accelerating, with footfall in both outer London and market towns - locations where resilient activity levels are synonymous with home working - declining from the week before, whilst rising in Central London and regional cities outside the capital.”

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