Shopper numbers have fallen back from the previous week’s surge, when numbers were boosted by the re-opening of non-essential retail, industry data showed on Monday.
According to retail consultancy Springboard, footfall across all destinations eased by 3.4% in the week starting 18 April compared to the week before. During Monday to Friday, the fall was more pronounced, off 10.7%, although footfall then increased 0.9% on the Saturday.
Over the whole week, high streets reported a 0.8% decline, retail parks were off 3.5% and shopping centres were down 8.4%.
However, compared to pre-pandemic levels, footfall improved, down 19.9% against the same week in 2019, which Springboard said was “noticeably better” than the peak of -25% seen at the end of August 2020.
Diane Wehrle, insights director at Springboard, said: “The positive news for bricks and mortar retail continues, as the gap in footfall last week from the same week in 2019 continued to narrow.
“The tremendous opening week for retail was undoubtedly helped by the fact that it was the last week of the school Easter break for many children, which meant some parents took leave from work to visit stores and retail destinations as a family. It is therefore not surprising that footfall dipped last week as children went back to school and many people continue to work from home, making stores less accessible over the working week.”
Year-on-year comparisons are distorted, as the UK remained in lockdown this time last year with all non-essential retail closed.