// Just half of UK stores have reopened since lockdown was eased
// The East Midlands had the lowest reopening rate across England
New research has shown that only half of the UK’s shops have reopened since lockdown was eased last month, as Brits show increased preference for staying home.
Of the 20,351 sites that were allowed to reopen, including restaurants, takeaway shops and travel agents, 52 per cent had done so, according to a new survey from the Local Data Company (LDC).
The East Midlands had the lowest reopening rate across England at just 43 per cent, with Greater London not far ahead at 44 per cent.
- London’s West End at risk of losing £5bn in sales & 50,000 jobs
- Retail sales jump in June amid lockdown exit
Consumers’ reluctance to visit stores, bars and restaurants is putting pressure on businesses as many are still shielding or fear getting infected.
About 600 firms in London’s West End alone are at risk of losing £5 billion in sales, putting over 50,000 jobs at risk, if footfall does not bounce back, the New West End Company estimated.
Visits across Oxford Street, Bond Street, Regent Street and Mayfair fell by 73 per cent since June 15 compared to last year.
“Despite having the opportunity to trade, many operators have chosen not to re-open, especially in London where footfall is taking much longer to return,” LDC head of retail and strategic partnerships Lucy Stainton said.
“Only time will tell how many of these temporary closures will become permanent,” she said.