UK's High Streets, Shopping Centres Most Affected By August Footfall Decline: BRC-Springboard
Retail footfall declined 1.3% in August 2019, with high streets and shopping centres witnessing the steepest fall, according to latest data from the BRC-Springboard Footfall and Vacancies Monitor.
Diane Wehrle, Springboard Marketing and Insights Director, said, "On a positive note, August had the strongest footfall over the summer months, and it was also an improvement on last year when footfall declined by -1.6%.
"This month’s result was bolstered by the final week of the month, when the hottest August bank holiday on record improved footfall from -1.4% to -0.6%."
On a three-month basis, footfall decreased 2.1% while the six and twelve-month average decline stood at 1.4% and 1.7% respectively.
Chief-executive of the British Retail Consortium, Helen Dickinson OBE, commented, "The long-term trend, which has seen footfall decline by an average of 1.7% over the last twelve months, reflects the fact that increasingly cautious consumers are holding back on discretionary spending and not heading out to the shops."
High Streets And Shopping Centres
Footfall in high streets declined 1.9% during the period compared to 2.0% in 2018. The three-month average decline for the period was 3.1%, data showed.
Shopping centre footfall declined by 2.2% in August, while the three-month average decline was 2.6%. In August of last year, footfall in shopping centres declined 2.4%.
Retail parks witnessed a 1.0% increase in footfall during the period from an increase of 0.3% in August 2018. On a three-month average basis, it saw a 0.7% growth.
Wehrle explained, "In retail parks, footfall rose in each of the first three weeks [in August], averaging +1%, levelling off in the last week but remaining in positive territory. This demonstrates their ongoing attractiveness to shoppers as they continue to bridge the convenience-experience gap, necessary in today’s retail environment."
Commenting on existing market conditions, Dickinson added, "There is little sign that the stresses on retail will abate any time soon. Stuck between weak demand thanks to Brexit uncertainty, and rising costs resulting from business rates and other public policy costs, many retailers are clearly struggling.
"The Government should take the opportunity to reduce the heavy cost burden holding back retail investment."
© 2019 European Supermarket Magazine – your source for the latest retail news. Article by Dayeeta Das. Click subscribe to sign up to ESM: European Supermarket Magazine.