Leeds retailers insist they are doing just fine, despite new research suggesting shopper footfall in November is at its worst since the 2008 recession.
By Emma Hildebrand and Vaishali Varu
Analysis firm Springboard found shopping centres has the most significant footfall drop, with a -8.3 decrease.
However, this isn’t the case in the Leeds big shopping centres.
Steven Foster, General Manager of White Rose Shopping Center said, “Every year, the festive period is our busiest spell of the year and this November and December has been no exception”.
Trinity Leeds marketing manager Dan Wharton said that they had seen a retail boost after launching their late night shopping, which meant stores close at 9pm Monday to Saturday.
Shoppers in Leeds started doing their Christmas shopping on Black Friday which took place in November, just before the usual busy period in December.
Leeds shopper Chris was shopping in St Johns Centre today. “I’ve already done most of my Christmas shopping on Black Friday”, he said.
Trinity marketing Manager added Black Friday gave ” a further lift for retailers at Trinity Leeds and this year was no exception.”
According to Office for National Statistics, internet sales as a percentage of total retail sales has risen by 15.2% within the last 10 years.
UK’s online retail association IMRG found online spending rose by +7.3% on Black Friday.
Sonia, employee from independent store Fabrication which is also situated in the st John’s centre says their store is getting by. “I have heard other stores in St Johns Centre have notice less shoppers”, she said.
However, shoe store ‘Garage Shoes’ also situated in Leeds St Johns Centre has a different story. “we’ve had a better year this year, all through the summer it was a really good response” says employee Margret Halroid.