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Shoppers shun 'vulnerable' high streets over early Easter weekend

Footfall to high streets fell by 4.7% on Good Friday and Saturday, compared to the same period last year, despite Easter falling two weeks earlier this year.

Shopping centres registered a small decline of 0.3%, while retail parks were up by 2.7%, according to research from retail data company Springboard.

For the week ending on Saturday April 4 as a whole, footfall to all retail destinations was up 6.4%. Shopping centres increased by 10.4% and retail parks by 14.9%, compared with just 0.9% for high streets.

Diane Wehrle, director of retail insights at Springboard, said: “The vulnerability of high streets is demonstrated by the fact that, over the last week as a whole, in all but two areas of the UK there were double-digit increases in footfall on retail parks. In shopping centres double-digit increases were recorded in five of the 10 areas of the UK.

“In contrast, in high streets footfall fell in five of the 10 areas of the UK and the only double-digit increase occurred in Scotland.”

However, sunshine and warmer than average temperatures across the UK are expected to provide a boost for retailers from Easter Monday, continuing into the rest of the week.

@Tara_Hounslea

Readers' comments (1)

  • As usual this is a generalisation. We are a high street on the south coast, and we were busy right through the weekend because people rushed to seaside resorts with the good weather. I do wish reports were less gloom and doom for everyone all the time. Sometimes the coast does well, sometimes when events are on rural areas do well, retail and high streets are not homogenous!

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