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Industry News August retail sales growth supports consumer optimism

Published on September 13th, 2021 | by The GC Team


Return to routine shapes retail footfall

The start of the school term and the return to work of those on holiday led to a week-on-week decline in retail footfall, but comparisons on the same week in 2020 were up 14.6%.

The fall of 4.2% on the previous week was starker in coastal towns which attracted staycationers and daytrippers over the summer, while outer-London town centres and market towns saw shopper numbers rise from the week.

Footfall in central London and in regional cities outside of the capital declined, however, demonstrating that the majority of employees continue to work from home.

Retail intelligence firm Springboard said working from home is clearly supporting high streets in general – the decline in high street footfall across the UK from the prior week was less than a third of that in shopping centres and half that in retail parks. 

“Although it is evident that the vast majority of employees are continuing to work from home, it seems that the drift back to offices might have commenced,” said Springboard’s Marketing and Insights Director Diane Wehrle.

“Springboard’s ‘Central London Back to Office Footfall Benchmark’, which comprises only those locations in areas with offices rather than retail, showed a rise in footfall last week from the week before, whilst across central London as a whole footfall declined.”

Based on pre-pandemic 2019 figures, week-on-week footfall fell 17.3%.

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