Retail footfall strengthened in second half of January
New figures have shown that retail footfall worsened slightly in January to 20.8% below 2019 from 18.6% below in December last year, but strengthened in the second half of the month.
The data from retail specialist Springboard also reveals that footfall declined from 2019 by 26.1% in high streets, 25.5% in shopping centres and 4.3% in retail parks.
However, the removal of Plan B Covid-19 restrictions meant that overall footfall rose in the final two weeks of the month to 19.2% below 2019 from 21.5% below 2019 in the first two weeks, although the gain only came from high streets. Activity was boosted by employees returning to their offices for at least part of the week, and customers returning to physical stores during the day and to restaurants in the evening.
Diane Wehrle, marketing and insights director at Springboard, said: “Whilst shopping centres and retail parks did not see a noticeable uplift in footfall in January, the impetus created by the start of the great return to the high street will inevitably generate a ripple effect across all physical destinations in the forthcoming weeks, which even at this early stage offers a reason for optimism amongst retailers and retail destinations.”