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Half-term week leads to UK footfall jump of 11.1%

Tom Bottomley
01 November 2021

Footfall across all UK retail destinations rose by 11.1% last week, 24-30 October, 2021, compared to the week before, with school half-term week cited as providing the boost.

The figures were just shy of the +11.6% week-on-week increase in the week before the late May bank holiday, according to the latest data from retail experts Springboard.

High streets and shopping centres benefited the most, with rises of +12.1% and +15.2% from the previous week respectively, but footfall also rose in retail parks by +4.7%.

Over the five days from Monday to Friday the overall increase was even greater, at +15.5%, while it was +20.6% in shopping centres, +17.5% in high streets and +5.7% in retail parks.

The boost in footfall meant that the gap from 2019 narrowed to -10.9% across all retail destinations from -15.3% last week, with footfall +34.8% higher than in the same week in 2020.

The opportunity for consumers to make trips further afield during the half-term break meant that there was a greater rise in footfall in towns that are more attractive to visitors than in local high streets.

Footfall in coastal and historic towns rose by +18.9% and +12.6% respectively, while in Central London footfall rose by +19.4%, and in regional cities outside of the capital it rose by +16.1%.

Diane Wehrle, Insights Director at Springboard, commented: “The October school half- term holiday last week delivered a noticeable boost to footfall across UK retail destinations, with an increase in activity from the week before across all three key destination types - the largest since the week before the late May bank holiday - and double digit rises in both high streets and shopping centres

“Footfall rose from the previous week on every day last week, with the largest increases occurring over the five days from Monday to Friday. All types of high street benefited, but consumers clearly took the opportunity to travel further afield as the increases in footfall in coastal towns, historic towns, Central London and regional cities outside of the capital were at least twice that in market towns.”

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