UK retail footfall continues to rise, second report shows
A second footfall report this week has shown that visitor traffic to retail destinations continues to improve. After Ipsos said footfall is rising, now Springboard has said that he gradual return to office working ensured UK retail footfall rose for fifth straight week for the seven days to 12 February.
Footfall rose by 2.2% week-on-week across all UK retail destinations, led by high streets, up 2.6%, followed by a 2.4% lift in shopping centres and a more modest 1.1% gain in retail parks.
That slightly contradicted the Ipsos figures that showed retail parks being strongest.
That continuing migration back to office meant footfall rose in all types of town centre, with the largest rise of 7.1% in regional cities outside of London versus the 3.3% lift seen in Central London.
Springboard's Central London Back to the Office benchmark was in line with that of Central London as a whole, rising by 3% from the week before.
Footfall was muted during the first part of the week, declining in overall terms from the week before on each day between Sunday and Tuesday. At least numbers rose modestly in high streets on both Monday and Tuesday, which averaged +1.2%.
Footfall then increased each day between Wednesday and Saturday, averaging +4.9% across all UK retail destinations. The greatest uplift was on Friday when footfall rose by 8.7% overall and by 11.5% in high streets.
However, the gap from the 2019 footfall level widened to -21.2% last week from -17.1% in the week before. But compared to a year ago, footfall was 149% higher than in the same week in 2021 when Lockdown 3 was still in place.
Diane Wehrle, Insights Director at Springboard, noted the although the weekly numbers continue to increase “the degree of uplift appears to be tapering off. Footfall increases in [high streets, shopping centres and retail parks] were lower than the week before which followed payday, and which is often a driver of retail spending."
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