Christmas shoppers keep station retailers on track
Network Rail has revealed that retail sales at its managed stations during the festive period grew by 9.5% compared to the same period in the previous year.
Its figures show that from 19 November to 24 December, the number of people visiting Network Rail's stations grew by just under 10% to 106 million.
Almost one in three station visitors entered a retail outlet and the increase in station retail purchases equated to total sales of over £83 million during the period.
Food and drink outlets performed particularly well, with the top five outlets in stations recording an average of 50% sales growth.
Retail outlets, driven by gift purchases, also put in a strong performance with growth of 24%. Station supermarket sales remained buoyant, rising by 4% over the festive period.
Christmas sales increased most at Edinburgh Waverley station with an uplift of 41%. This was followed by Birmingham New Street and Leeds.
The top performing stations in London were Paddington, King's Cross and Euston.
The festive sales surge was also boosted by store openings by The Bookshop by WH Smith and HEMA at Euston, as well as Urban Decay at King’s Cross and James Martin Kitchen at Manchester Piccadilly.
David Biggs, Network Rail’s managing director of property, said: “The quality and diversity of gifts, food and beverage options now available to station users is a direct result of station investment.
"Our major retail developments and strategy to bring in new and exciting retailers is helping us achieve our long term goal of improving the station experience for our customers, while crucially generating vital funds to reinvest back into the railway.”
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