This week we were so happy to see the city centres of the UK spring back to life, as lockdown restrictions lifted meaning that non-essential retail, hospitality, gyms and salons could all open for the first time since last year.
As the week progressed, we found more and more similarly positive statistics about these city centres up and down the country, following the same trend of massive uptakes in footfall.
- Liverpool BID reported footfall at 194,984 on Monday 12th April, which was a significantly bigger bounce-back than when retail & hospitality reopened in July last year, when footfall only reached 135,584.
- The owners of The Moor revealed that last Monday, April 12, the day on which the restrictions were further eased, 52,000 visitors were recorded. They said that was 10 per cent more than on the busiest Saturday in 2019, before the coronavirus pandemic.
- More generally, in the UK as a whole footfall was up 218.2% week on week at 10am, with rises of 339.7% in shopping centres, 232.8% in high streets and 58.2% on retail parks’ (Springboard).
- The idea of ‘revenge spending’ for the time missed out during lockdown is proving to be true. Lloyds Bank said spending on clothing via its debit cards was up 116% Monday to Thursday compared with the same days in the previous week. It said more than two-thirds (68%) of spending was in stores as people flocked back to high streets.
The hospitality bookings website TheFork, formerly known as Bookatable, said pub and restaurant bookings were more than double those of July last year, which was when the first lockdown ended.
And a VoucherCodes.co.uk study with the Centre for Retail Research showed £2.8billion was spent in shops.
Below we’ve compiled images from around our city centre portfolio over the last week for you to browse through, as out of home makes a comeback.
The first week of reopening delivered outstanding performance for UK retail destinations and stores, with an increase in footfall from the week before that was virtually double our forecast; providing concrete evidence of the desire of shoppers to return to bricks and mortar stores and destinations.