Thu, 25 Jun 2020
More than 70,000 people were in Newbury's Northbrook Street in the first week of lockdown easing last week.
Non-essential shops were allowed to open for the first time in three months on June 15 but with strict guidelines in place to assist with social distancing.
Newbury Business Improvement District (BID) monitors footfall in Northbrook Street and recorded 71,404 people in the town centre from Monday, June 15 to Sunday, June 21.
The busiest period was 12pm on Saturday with 2,050 people recorded shopping in town. Saturday was the busiest day overall with 15,429 visitors.
The worst day for footfall was Thursday when 7,055 visitors were monitored in Northbrook Street.
The figures show a stark contrast to the same time last year where 185,796 people were recorded, a -61.6 per cent decrease.
But compared to the week before the lockdown eased, footfall increased by 35.6 per cent from 52,647 to 71,404.
Last week's figures were also impacted by heavy rain and thunderstorms from Tuesday to Friday.
West Berkshire’s executive member for finance and economic development, Ross Mackinnon (Con, Bradfield) said: "We are really pleased to see that the first week of non-essential shops being open has gone so well. It’s great to see that residents are keen to get back into our town centres and to support our local businesses.
“It has been clear that those shoppers who are returning are doing so safely and considerately. For our part, we have been supporting town centre businesses by offering advice and printed resources in the past few weeks.
“Our challenge now is to ensure that our hospitality and service businesses, such as salons, can re-open whilst adhering to the new guidance. We’re looking at innovative ways to help them to do this, including new temporary licences and signage. Any business who needs support to get back on their feet should get in touch and we will do what we can.”
Businesses needing support should email Gabrielle.Mancini@westberks.gov.uk