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Back-to-school hits footfall

Footfall dropped 1.2% in the first full week following the start of the new school year – a softer decline than the 2.7% drop in the same week last year, new data reveals.

Research from Springboard and the British Retail Consortium (BRC) shows footfall for the week beginning 8 September was also down by 2.6% compared with the previous seven days, which were boosted by back-to-school prep. 

Retail parks beat the downward trend with a boost to footfall of 1.7% year-on-year. Shopping centres fell 2% and the high street dropped 2.2%.

Results fluctuated across the week, as a disappointing start was counteracted by a more positive final few days.

A spokeswoman for Springboard said: “Looking at each day of the week reveals fairly noticeable shifts in footfall. The result was particularly poor on Monday when drops of -15% on a week-on-week basis and -6.9% year on year were a response to a noticeable uplift last week in the run up to the start of the school term and a bounce back from the August bank holiday Monday. Friday was by far the best performing day of the week, with footfall increasing by +7.8% over the week and by +3.8% from 2018, possibly a result of consumers shopping early in anticipation of the hot Saturday.”

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