Retailers are preparing to reopen their doors next week after months of closure, with many consumers looking forward to returning to the high street.
Research published this morning showed that 84 per cent of Brits said they are likely to visit their local high street or shopping centre next week, after non-essential stores reopen on Monday.
Respondents to the survey by retail landlord Landsec showed that 31 per cent of consumers said being able to enjoy other leisure activities, such as restaurants and bars, was a key attraction of in-person shopping.
In total, 24 per cent of shoppers said socialising was the major draw of visiting their local high street.
Meanwhile, despite the surge in online shopping during the pandemic, 76 per cent of the 1,319 survey participants said they would return to the pre-Covid levels of in-person shopping by the autumn.
Retail footfall increased by 8.5 per cent last week, continuing the growth trajectory as the date for lifting lockdown restrictions approached, according to separate research by Springboard.
In central London, footfall over Easter was up a huge 200.5 per cent compared with the bank holiday weekend last year, when the UK had recently entered its first nation-wide lockdown.
Springboard has previously forecast that footfall across UK destinations could surge as much as 48 per cent next week, followed by a 10 per cent jump in the week after.
UK retailers have begun announcing their reopening plans, with some restrictions such as social distancing, face coverings and hand washing to remain in place.
John Lewis will open all of its stores in England and Wales, apart from those that it has decided to permanently close, from Monday followed by its Edinburgh and Glasgow sites on 14 May and 26 April respectively.
Ikea has said its sites in England and Wales will also reopen from Monday, along with click and collect in Northern Ireland, following the relaunch of its Scottish stores on 5 April.