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Footfall drops 2.4% in September

Retail footfall dropped 2.4% year-on-year in September with all regions recording a decline in activity according to figures released by the British Retail Consortium and Springboard.

GENERAL MERCHANDISE

Footfall drops 2.4% in September

The fall compares with particularly strong figures in September 2012 when footfall rose by 0.5%.

The BRC/Springboard Footfall Monitor found that high street footfall was 2.7% lower than a year ago, falling sharply from the 0.6% decline in August. After five months of positive growth, footfall in out-of-town locations fell 1.3%.

Footfall in shopping centre locations dropped 2.9% compared with a year earlier, the twelfth consecutive month to report a decline in footfall.

The West Midlands and the South West were hardest-hit with footfall falling 3.5% and 5.5% respectively.

Helen Dickinson, British Retail Consortium director general, said: "Negative numbers across the UK are clearly a concern this close to Christmas, but there are a few factors at play.

"We're comparing against a very strong September in 2012, when the post-Olympic period coupled with a cold snap unleashed pent-up demand for shopping trips to stock up on warmer clothing and back-to-school items. In contrast, this year's milder September has slowed the uptake of Autumn ranges, a trend reflected in our sales figures last week.

"The sense of tentative optimism is continuing to take hold in the wider economy, but many of us remain cautious and keen to manage our budgets in the run-up to the festive season. Retailers will continue to monitor the mood and respond to customer demand accordingly as they prepare for the all-important countdown to Christmas."

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