May 30, 2023
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UK footfall enjoys spring positives in latest week... but not Central London

May 30, 2023

The positives certainly came together for UK retail in the latest trading week (21-27 May). The run-up to school half-term week, the late May public holiday weekend and good spring weather all contributed to strengthen footfall across UK retail destinations last week, according to MRI Springboard’s latest figures.

Image: Nigel Taylor

Overall, week-on-week footfall increased by 3.3%, with a 4% uplift in retail parks, 3.2% in shopping centres and 2.9% in high streets.

Footfall was stronger last week across all town types, except Central London, where footfall declined 2.3% from the previous seven-day period. 

In fact, it was a week of two halves for Central London with footfall flat from the week before between Sunday and Wednesday, and then an average 5.1% drop from the week before over the three subsequent days to Saturday as the great getaway for half-term break began. 

Unsurprisingly, in view of the start of school holiday and with warm and sunny weather over the weekend, by far the greatest uplift in footfall (12.3%) occurred in coastal towns. 

Footfall rose from the week before on each day last week, with the increase peaking on Friday at 9.3% fas consumers shopped ahead of the weekend. 

On Saturday, footfall continued to rise from the previous week, but the uplift from the week before on that one day was much more modest at 1.7% as many people were travelling to their holiday destinations. 

The fine weather on Sunday led to a rise in UK footfall of 9.1% on that day, which was the greatest of any day last week. In fact, in some locations, Sunday’s rise was spectacular. In coastal towns footfall on Sunday was 30.2% higher than on the previous Sunday, it was 22.3% higher in city centres around the UK, 17.6% higher in Central London and 11.6% higher in historic towns.

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