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UK retail footfall down 1% in February

UK retail footfall fell by 1% year-on-year in February to mark the sixth consecutive month of decline although the number of shoppers visiting high streets edged up 0.1%.

SHOPPING CENTRES & RETAIL PARKS

UK retail footfall down 1% in February

UK retail footfall fell by 1% year-on-year in February to mark the sixth consecutive month of decline although the number of shoppers visiting high streets edged up 0.1%.

The figures from the BRC-Springboard Footfall and Vacancies monitor reveal that footfall in retail parks dropped by 1.6% to mark their biggest fall since 2013. The drop was driven by spending on furniture and household items, traditionally a significant footfall driver for retail parks, weakening slightly in February.

Meanwhile shopping centre footfall declined by 2.6% in the month.

Diane Wehrle, insights director at Springboard, said: “Footfall in February was a tale of two halves. Whilst footfall improved slightly with a drop of 1% per cent compared to 1.3% in January however, this decline is not reflective of the stabilisation of consumer behaviour.”

Wehrle said Increasing uncertainty arising from the imminent triggering of Article 50 has started to impact purchasing behaviour, the types of destinations shoppers are visiting and how they spend their money.

She added: “High streets are clearly benefiting as the destination of choice for dining and leisure, whilst shopping centres continue to underperform as they struggle with a weak entertainment and leisure offer, coupled with increasing caution amongst consumers around retail spend.”

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