Fewer shoppers

Christmas rush to shops on hold as footfall falters

Christmas shoppers in Multrees Walk
There are fewer shoppers than last year, according to data (pic: Terry Murden)

Christmas shoppers are yet to hit the streets with any force as footfall in Scotland’s retail destinations slipped back 0.9% in November compared to the same month last year.

David Lonsdale, director of the Scottish Retail Consortrium, said it was the second successive monthly fall in foot-traffic with “scant sign pre-Christmas trading has taken off.”

He said the fall will disappoint retailers who were hoping for a lift during what is traditionally the second busiest trading month of the year.

“That said, footfall in shopping centres returned to growth and Edinburgh once again outperformed. However, overall shopper footfall across Scotland remains a sixth lower than prior to the pandemic.”

At UK level, the British Retail Consortium adopted a more positive view of a slightly better 0.7% fall in November, saying it was an improvement on the sharp 5.7% fall in rainswept October.

Helen Dickinson, chief executive, said the improvement was a result of a “slight uptick in consumer confidence, as well as easing inflationary pressures and more predictable weather”.

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