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Retail footfall plummets in wake of new lockdown

By Don-Alvin Adegeest

9 Nov 2020

The closure of non essential stores has already led to a -15.4 percent decline in footfall since last week.

In the days preceding the lockdown a mini boom saw shoppers flock to high streets and retail centres. Over the four days between Sunday and Thursday, footfall rose from the week before by an average of +11.7 percent and on Tuesday and Wednesday the uplift averaged +18.9 percent peaking at +20.4 percent on Wednesday.  From Thursday onwards footfall crashed, which of course is the overriding objective of the lockdown, and footfall declined by an average of -46.7 percent from the week before.

According to Springboard retail parks continue to be far more resilient than high streets or shopping centres, fuelled by the presence of food stores, with a drop in footfall from the week before of -9.7 percent versus -16.2 percent in high streets and -18.9 percent in shopping centres. 

Diane Wehrle, Springboard’s Insight Director stated: “Last week was in the clearest sense a week of two halves. With the second lockdown being announced on Saturday evening before the start of the week on Sunday, but not coming into force until Thursday, it was inevitable that there would be a last minute surge in activity, which is exactly what occurred.

The resilience of retail parks has been consistent throughout this year and has remained true during this new lockdown with footfall declining almost half that of high streets and shopping centres last week. As shops closed throughout the UK from Thursday, the bounce back effect of footfall on high streets and in shopping centres after the 2nd of December may illuminate whether the Christmas season can provide a much needed boost to the retail sector.”

Image: Sara Kurfess / Unsplash