West End footfall returns to 86 per cent of December 2020 peak since reopening
Shaftesbury, a Real Estate Investment Trust which invests exclusively in the liveliest parts of London's West End, has seen footfall return to 86 per cent of the peak in December in 2020, just before London was placed into the third lockdown.
Footfall has continued to build across the area following the reopening of non-essential shops, restaurants, cafes and bars on Monday 12 April. The Company expects this trend to continue in the weeks and months ahead as office workers, a vital part of the West End’s economy begin to return to the area and, with indoor hospitality expected to be permitted from mid-May, increasing numbers of visitors being able to return to the area’s world-famous hospitality offer.
To support the reopening, al fresco seating has been introduced across Carnaby, Chinatown, Fitzrovia, Seven Dials and Soho for over 3,000 people to provide safe, comfortable all-day dining opportunities for groups of up to six people, all while observing social distancing guidelines, bringing buzz and activity to the West End as people return to enjoy their favourite restaurant, bar or café.
Brian Bickell, CEO, says: “It has been heartening to see people returning in large numbers to our iconic streets over the past week, in a safe and secure manner. The West End is beginning to feel alive once more, which has been made possible by the commitment that our partners and local businesses share with us to kickstart its recovery. Now as we approach the next milestone, it is important that this momentum is maintained to ensure this positive start to the easing of lockdown is sustained.”