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Footfall decline slows
Published:  06 December, 2016

Retail parks and high streets lead the way

Analysing the latest numbers Springboard said: “It is perhaps unsurprising that last week - the week following Black Friday - footfall declined by -1.3 per cent in bricks and mortar destinations across the UK. What is more surprising, however, is that there was a noticeable improvement in overall footfall activity from the same week in 2015 when footfall dropped by -3.5 per cent. The dominant shift has been in high streets and to a lesser extent in retail parks, with footfall moving from -5.5 per cent in high streets last year to just -0.6 per cent this year; and the in the other direction in retail parks, from +1.9 per cent last year to -0.8 per cent this year.

"Part of this drop in retail park activity is likely to be accounted for by the lower than expected rise in online transactions on Black Friday this year - necessitating fewer click and collect trips - and also partly due to the strengthening of high street activity as a consequence of growth in footfall post 5pm.

"Footfall in shopping centres, whilst languishing behind high streets and retail parks at -3.2 per cent improved slightly, from -4 per cent last year. As has been stated previously, many malls are not able to capture the growth in footfall emanating from the post 5pm due to a paucity of non-retail offer, leaving high streets to capitalise on the burgeoning popularity of leisure led trips to destinations. It is too early to state that there is a resurgence of the high street, however, the evidence is that it is responding to consumer demand as footfall improved over the year in all but one area of the UK.”