High street boosted by Jubilee crowds

Shops across the UK saw an increase in customer numbers over the Platinum Jubilee weekend.

Footfall increased by 6.9% compared with the average for May 2022, according to BRC-Sensormatic IQ data. Across the whole week, footfall was up 17.1%.

Thursday, the first of the two bank holidays, was the best performing day, with a 45.6% rise in footfall versus the average for May 2022.

“The public took to the streets for the Jubilee celebrations, with retail footfall enjoying significant improvements over the early parts of the long weekend,” said Helen Dickinson, chief executive of British Retail Consortium (BRC).

“More people hit the shops, with many on the hunt for Jubilee decorations, garden accessories and new outfits. Thursday saw the best footfall as the public readied for a weekend of celebrations, from street parties to festivals.”

Figures released by the BRC last week show that retail visitor numbers rose by 0.6% between April and May. Footfall was still down 12.5% against the comparable numbers for 2019, before the pandemic.

Dickinson noted that with living costs continuing to soar, any rise in shopper numbers remains fragile.

“As inflation continues to climb and consumer confidence falls, it is by no means certain footfall will continue to improve in the months to come.”