High street footfall fell in the week after Christmas as shoppers opted to bag their bargains at shopping centres and retail parks.

The number of shoppers heading to the high street after Christmas fell 3% against “strong” comparatives from last year, when the number of consumers hitting the high street jumped 6.2%. 

However, there were peaks of strong uplift in traffic for the high street, according to footfall specialists Springboard.

December 29, which has been labelled ‘Take back Tuesday’, reported a 5.1% increase in shopper numbers on the high street. Footfall in the town centre locations also rose 9.7% on January 2, but traffic fell 2.6% on New Year’s Day.

It was a different story for out-of-town retail parks, which reported a 3.6% uplift in shopper numbers during the period from December 29 to January 2. Shopping centres recorded a footfall rise of 1.8%.

In contrast to the high street’s News Year’s Day slowdown, shopper numbers soared 9.2% at shopping centres and 7.8% at retail parks on January 1. 

Overall footfall during the period was down 0.3%, despite a 2.7% uplift on New Year’s Day.

Springboard insights and marketing director Diane Wehrle said: “Building on strong footfall experienced by high streets this time last year was always going to be a challenge for high streets, and these figures show there a job to be done in 2016 in order for a positive uplift to be realised.”

Springboard index

For the latest weekly footfall figures from Springboard visit Retail Week’s footfall index page.