High Street footfall remains 'lower than pre-pandemic levels', research finds

UK High Street footfall in 2022 remained lower than pre-pandemic figures, new research has revealed.

Springboard found that footfall across the UK was 14.2 per cent lower over the 12 months from January to December compared to 2019.

The Greater London region saw the highest footfall rise of - 19.1 per cent – yet remained 8.2 per cent lower than in 2019.

The shopper analytics platform does not foresee footfall returning to pre-pandemic footfall in 2023 and predicts the gap from 2019 to settle at between an average 5 per cent and 10 per cent.

The lower footfall is largely attributable to localism – for example consumers staying within their own local areas – which Springboard said has been driven by people working from home.

In January 2022, 28 per cent of consumers stated that they worked at home for some days each week, yet by November, the figure had risen to 34 per cent of consumers.

Reflecting on the impact on remote working, Springboard said its impact on footfall had largely been evident in a lower rate of recovery back to the 2019 level in High Streets during weekdays.

Due to High Streets’ concentration of offices, it concluded that they have felt more acutely the impact of the drop in office-based workers than shopping centres or retail parks which are predominantly retail-based locations.

The British Retail Consortium recently found that the UK experienced its "biggest drop in sales volumes on record" in 2022.

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