Retail hit

Shopper footfall plunges 40% in ‘annus horribilis’

Shoppers in masks

Shoppers have stayed away from retail centres

Shoppers continue to snub the high street, with footfall down by almost 40% in November and Glasgow seeing numbers fall by half.

David Lonsdale, director of the Scottish Retail Consortium, said: “Stores forcibly closed have lost out on the best part of £3 billion of revenues so far this year, after what has truly been an annus horribilis for retail.

“Policy makers need to think more creatively about how they can reignite consumer confidence and entice people back to shopping. This could be through free parking or a retail voucher scheme like Northern Ireland is implementing to help stores and high streets through the leaner winter months in the early part of the new year.”

  • Year on year Scottish footfall decreased by 39.7% in November, with an 8.5 percentage point deterioration from October. This remains above the UK average decline of 65.4%.
  • Year on year footfall in Glasgow decreased by 49.0% in November, a further 13.0 percentage point drop from October.
  • After Northern Ireland, Scotland saw the shallowest Shopping Centre footfall decline of all regions, with -38.9%.
  • Weekly footfall has steadily declined over the last four weeks, with a sharp drop in the final week of the month following eleven local authorities moving into local lockdowns on 20th November.

Primark sales fall

Primark’s owner ABF says the chain has taken a £430m hit to sales from lockdowns but insists it remains on track to deliver improved profits.

In an update ahead of its AGM Associated British Foods said that only 34 of its stores across Europe remained closed.

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