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UK Consumers Remain Cautious About Returning To High Streets

The number of shoppers visiting UK retailers was down by nearly 50% last week compared with a year earlier and the amount of money spent in pubs and restaurants as they reopened last weekend suffered a similar fall, new data has shown.

The British Retail Consortium said footfall in shopping streets and centres fell by 49.6% year on year, only a slightly less severe decline than the previous week's 53.4% slide.

Non-essential retailers were allowed to reopen in England on 15 June while Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland have also relaxed their restrictions now.

Slow Recovery

"By European standards, the UK's recovery remains slow, and while safety measures introduced by retailers have been well received by customers, many shoppers are still reluctant to visit physical shopping locations," the BRC's chief executive Helen Dickinson said.

Separately on Tuesday, Barclaycard said the total value of transactions across hospitality, leisure and entertainment between 4-5 July was down 45% compared with the same weekend last year.

News by Reuters, edited by Checkout. Click subscribe to sign up to ESM: European Supermarket Magazine.

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