Retail parks continue to outperform other destinations for footfall
UK retail footfall was 0.2% lower in October than the same month last year which meant the rate of decline was unchanged from September.
The figures released by the British Retail Consortium and Springboard in their monthly footfall monitor show that high streets and shopping centres reported falls of 1% and 1.3% respectively.
Meanwhile, footfall in retail parks edged up 2.9%.
Helen Dickinson, BRC chief executive, said: “The locations consumers are choosing to shop remains in a state of flux. While the rate of decline in footfall across high streets and shopping centres appears to have stabilised, more and more shoppers are choosing to visit retail parks which offer a greater mix of leisure and retail.”
Four regions in England reported footfall growth in October. These included the East Midlands, the South West, the South East and Greater London.
While footfall in Scotland edged down 0.6%, Northern Ireland and Wales moved into positive territory in the month with respective increases of 2.1% and 0.4%. The BRC said this was first time Wales had reported growth in footfall since the monitor began.
The national town centre vacancy rate was 9.1% in October, down from the 9.8% rate reported in July.
Diane Wehrle, marketing and insights director at Springboard, said: “After a long period of recession and low demand for additional space from retailers, alongside the growth of leisure and food and beverage and multi-channel shopping, landlords have been forced into being more flexible about who they are prepared to accept as tenants and on what terms – no longer able to demand the strength of covenant they were once able to, we are now seeing a broadening of occupier types in high streets and shopping centres which can only be for the good.”
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