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Half term boosts footfall but urban shopping decline continues

Last week’s footfall across all retail destinations was up by almost 5% on the previous week but recorded an annual decline of 1.45% across high streets and shopping centres, continuing a trend away from urban centres.

Retail parks maintained a consistent 0.8% increase for the week beginning February 15 against the previous week, and a 0.9% lift on 2014.

“A drop in footfall of 1% belies the effect that the split of half term weeks across the country (some occurred the previous week), with such a large volume of visitor numbers now spread across a two-week period, has across retail venues,” said Springboard marketing and insights director Diane Wehrle.

“Visitors have polarised towards high streets and shopping centres where entertainment and events have enticed families into not only shopping but taking advantage of the leisure facilities in these locations; high streets, despite an annual decline of 1.7%, saw an uplift of 8.1% against the previous week and similarly, shopping centres, fell 1.2% annually, rising 4.2% against week commencing February 7.

“Retail parks once again rose, up by 0.9% but lifted just 0.8% against the previous week.”

The South East was the only region to witness increases across each location, which Springboard attributed to the sunny weather across the region. The West Midlands fell the most at 3.4% across all retail locations, driven by high street decline of 6.3%.


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