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London and other UK cities struggle to reclaim former footfall

By Andrea Byrne


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Consumer and intelligence specialist, CACI, has reported the difference between central London and the rest of the capitals as the UK comes to terms with the ‘rule of six’.

In the working hotspots of Holborn and the city, movement levels are 24 percent and 20 percent respectively, compared to pre-Covid levels. There are parts of the West End which exceed more than 50 percent of pre-Covid movements, this could be due to an unwillingness to use public transport, according to the CACI.

Some of London’s busiest stations: Euston, King’s Cross, Victoria and Waterloo, are at an average of 25 percent in their movements versus pre-Covid.

However, local retail destinations throughout London are thriving, some locations are nearly 100 percent back to pre-Covid levels of movement. Overall, movements in London are now within seven percent points of the national average, which stands at 78 percent to pre-Covid levels for the third consecutive week in a row.

Alex McCulloch, director of CACI, said in a statement: “Much is being said by a number of leading figures and industry bodies about the plight of central London, which is indicative of the situation in most cities in the UK.

“These latest numbers, however, which record consumer movements in the weeks schools returned and Eat Out to Help Out finished, show the stark reality. While the capital’s local neighbourhoods are clearly thriving in the new term-time reality, central London is a shadow of its former self.

“The cause is clear too; for as long as workers remain at home, the capital, and the rest of the UK’s cities, will struggle to reclaim former footfall. In this new consumer reality, the future lives in these cities doing what they do best, evolving and adapting to reflect a less frequent, but potentially more engaged worker.”

This report followed the CACI’s previous analysis.

Photo credit: CACI