Retailers braced for anticipated 6.5% rise in Bank Holiday weekend footfall

The number of shoppers out over the Bank Holiday weekend is expected to be up 6.5% on last year as the warm weather and weak pound create a bonanza for retailers.

Saturday is expected to be particularly busy, with a predicted 7.2% increase in footfall compared with this time last year, analysts Springboard said.

Springboard marketing and insights director Diane Wehrle said the warm and dry weather forecast and an increase in overseas and domestic tourists making the most of the fallen pound was behind the boost to shopper numbers.

She said: "In recent weeks we have seen better performance across all three retail destination types compared with 2015, particularly on high streets where footfall rose 1% over the last three weeks compared with the same period last year when footfall dropped 3.3%."

The biggest increases in footfall are expected on the high street and in retail parks, of 7.3% and 8% respectively, as shoppers gravitate to these locations in good weather, but shopping centres are also predicted to welcome 3.5% more visitors than this time last year.

Last year's August Bank Holiday weekend saw footfall in coastal towns rise by 15.8% compared with the previous year, "so increased leisure activity in these areas is likely to benefit the high street", Springboard said.

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