Footfall across UK retail destinations declined by -27.1% last week from the week before, Springboard shows

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Latest data from retail experts Springboard reveals that footfall across all UK retail destinations declined by -27.1% last week from the week before, which follows a drop of -23.2% in the previous week. 

With the UK now in lockdown 3.0 and all non-essential stores closed across the UK, the drop in footfall in shopping centres, which have very few essential stores, was greater than in high streets (-35% in shopping centres versus -26% in high streets). In both the decline exacerbated from the week before by around a third.   Even in retail parks which have continued to remain strong throughout the year, as the demand for food shopping returned to normality following the end of the festive period, footfall declined by -21.3% from the week before. 

Despite the plea from the government for people across the UK to stay home to save lives, the footfall results varied by geography. In the South West, the East and West Midlands and North & Yorkshire the decline in footfall from the week before exceeded -35% and reached over -40% in the East Midlands and the South West.  However, in the South East and Greater London, which have the highest infection rates, footfall only declined by -8% and -10.7% respectively. However, in London this was driven by Outer London areas where the drop in footfall was only -6.8% versus -25.9% in Central London. Despite this, the drop in footfall in Central London was still noticeably less than in regional cities outside of the capital where footfall declined by -39.6%.  In Wales and Northern Ireland footfall actually rose from the week before (by +10% in Wales and by +27.1% in Northern Ireland), although despite these increases footfall in both nations remains two thirds lower than last year.

Diane Wehrle, insights director at Springboard, commented: “During the first full working week of 2021 and introduction of lockdown 3.0, the reduction in footfall across UK retail destinations from the week before was nearly as great as that during early November when England entered lockdown 2.0.  The decline in footfall from last year is now around the same level as before non-essential retail stores reopened following lockdown 1.0 in June 2020.”

Week beginning 03/01/2021 (Sunday to Saturday)
 Year on year % change in footfallWeek on week % change in footfall
All UK Destinations-63.8%-27.1%
UK High Streets-70.2%-26.0%
UK Retail Parks-42.0%-21.3%
UK Shopping Centres-71.3%-35.0%
Week beginning 03/01/2021 (Sunday to Saturday) – All UK Retail Destinations
 Year on year % change in footfallWeek on week % change in footfall
East-64.1%-10.9%
East Midlands-68.4%-42.3%
Greater London-66.5%-10.7%
Northern Ireland-58.3%-38.5%
North & Yorkshire-66.3%-0.4%
Scotland-61.7%-8.0%
South East-59.7%-43.7%
South West-66.2%10.0%
Wales-63.3%-36.8%
West Midlands-68.4%27.1%
Week beginning 03/01/2021 (Sunday to Saturday)
 Year on year % change in footfallWeek on week % change in footfall
England-63.7%-30.4%
Wales-66.2%10.0%
Scotland-66.3%-0.4%
Northern Ireland-68.4%27.1%
Week beginning 03/01/2021 (Sunday to Saturday)
 Year on year % change in footfallWeek on week % change in footfall
Central London-86.2%-25.9%
Coastal Towns-58.8%-33.7%
Historic Towns-69.2%-36.1%
Market Towns-63.5%-21.8%
Outer London-57.4%-6.8%
Regional Cities-81.1%-38.8%
Regional Cities excl London-74.9%-39.6%