Easter staycations and weakened pound fuel footfall growth, BRC
The Easter holidays boosted family visits to shopping destinations in April, resulting in the fastest annual growth of footfall since March 2014, according to the British Retail Consortium. Footfall in April grew 1.6% on the same month in the previous year. As has been the trend for some months now, High Streets across most of the UK attracted the largest increase in visitors out of all shopping destinations. This translated into good news for stores, which saw their fastest annual sales growth since January last year.
“As Easter fell in April this year, as opposed to March last year, footfall was boosted by +1.6%. This rise comprised a +5% increase in the first half of the month – which culminated in Good Friday and Easter Saturday – and dropped 6.4% in the last two weeks,” says Diane Wehrle, Springboard Marketing and Insights Director. “The rise was fuelled further by the weakened pound, which drove an increase in overseas tourists – demonstrated by the +2.7% uplift in footfall in London’s West End in April – and in Easter staycations amongst domestic visitors. Easter staycations boosted footfall +5.1% in coastal towns and +7.9% in historic towns. The underlying structural shift towards leisure-focussed trips meant that whilst High Street footfall rose +1.9% during retail trading hours, trips to High Streets after 5pm increased by more than +3%."