School half term boosts footfall by 8%

According to retail expert Springboard, footfall rose by a significant +8.2% last week from the week before – a greater increase than in any week since Easter 2022. Footfall improved in all three key destination types: by 8.7% in high streets, by 10.7% in shopping centres, and by 4.2% in retail parks.

Springboard said consumers were ‘clearly visiting retail destinations for experiential days out’, with footfall in coastal and historic towns up 18.2% and 10.8% higher than the week before, and in major cities across the UK footfall was 12.5% higher. In contrast, the uplift in footfall from the week before in smaller, more local high streets was more modest: 5.8% higher in market towns and just 2.8% higher in Outer London.

Springboard insights director Diane Wehrle commented: “The school half term last week delivered a welcome boost to UK retail destinations. Customer activity increased in all three key destination types. However, high streets and shopping centres performed better than retail parks, both of which benefited from twice the uplift in retail parks. Performance ramped up as the week progressed, with footfall peaking on Thursday and Friday. By Saturday trips had tailed off, and footfall fell marginally below the week before.

“All parts of the UK benefited, although the south-west and Northern Ireland were the star performers, both recording a double-digit rise in footfall. The most modest increase occurred in Scotland, where half term took place a week earlier.

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“Footfall rose across all types of town, but the largest rises occurred in coastal and historic towns and in large city centres across the UK, which are attractive destinations for days out during the school holiday.”

Springboard provides insights on bricks-and-mortar retail activity, tracking and forecasting footfall and delivering performance metrics across all key retail destination types. It records more than 70 million footfall counts per week at 4,500 counting points across 480 different shopping sites in England, Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales.

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