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Wet and cold Bank Holiday could give retailers a boost

Jonathan Prynn
·1-min read
<p>Retail leaders are hoping that pent-up demand and forecasts of cool, cloudy <a href=

Retail leaders are hoping that pent-up demand and forecasts of cool, cloudy

weather will encourage spending

(PA Wire)" />

West End bosses are braced for the biggest surge of shoppers into their stores since lockdown during the early May Bank Holiday weekend.

Retail leaders are hoping that pent-up demand and forecasts of cool, cloudy weather will encourage spending in shops which have been trading for less than three weeks.

Helen Brocklebank, chief executive of luxury brands body Walpole, said: “I’ve got a really good feeling about what the weekend is going to bring. People have missed birthdays, parties and weddings, and brands have worked really hard on dangling beautiful things in front of them on Instagram, and they are acting like shiny carrots to get people interested. The weather is looking slightly less gorgeous over the weekend and that is really good for retail as well.”

Shopping centres are also hoping for bumper sales. Chris Barnes, general manager at Brent Cross, said: “Since reopening early this month, as with previous lockdowns, we have seen good demand at Brent Cross, as people want to experience retail and leisure again. Heading into the Bank Holiday weekend, we’re expecting to see a continuation of recent shopping trends, such as an increased spend on jewellery, demand for trainers and kitting growing children out with new wardrobes.”

Restaurants and bars are also heavily booked once again despite fears that rain forecast for Sunday and Monday could deter alfresco diners and drinkers.

Charlie Foster of Turnips, Borough Market, who has turned their fruit and veg stall into a pop-up restaurant, said: “We are fully booked Friday, Saturday, Sunday. As we are completely sheltered from rain and nice and warm with all the heaters, the weather doesn’t affect us massively.”

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