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Sunshine sends shoppers to the high street

Retail footfall in June increased 0.8% year-on-year, ahead of the three month average of 0.5%.

High street footfall increased 0.9%, while footfall in retail parks witnessed a 2.3% hike in visitors, compared to a 1% decrease in June 2016.

Meanwhile, footfall in shopping centres fell by 0.8% in June year-on year.

Helen Dickinson CEO, British Retail Consortium, said the UK benefitted from “sun fuelled shopping outings, with the East of England especially witnessing brisk growth”.

“Amidst economic uncertainty and mounting concern over the inflationary squeeze on household incomes, sustaining growth in shopper footfall will be challenging, more so as retailers seek to convert that into an improved performance at tills, “she said. “And while they step up their efforts to keep prices down for their customers against rising input prices and inflation, the Government can help alleviate the cost pressures in the immediate term by sticking to their commitment on business rates reform to deliver a system fit for purpose in the 21st century.”

Diane Wehrle, springboard marketing and insights director, added: “The rise in footfall of +0.8% in June is a result that tells a different story to the sales statistics we are seeing, with the Springboard Sales Tracker recording drops in sales in department stores of -1.6% and of -2.3% in fashion stores. However, sales do present a very varied picture, dependent on the breadth of the measure used and inflationary pressures which push sales values up.”

She also pointed to the trend of rising footfall after 5pm, combined with a rise hospitality sales of 0.3% in June, saying this shows a trend in consumer behaviour towards leisure trips after retail trading hours.