Mansfield town centre is emerging from shadow of Covid-19, figures show

Praise has been heaped on businesses and customers alike as Mansfield town centre shows the first signs that it is emerging from the shadow of Covid-19.

Friday, 23rd July 2021, 3:00 pm
Mansfield town centre is getting busier as restrictions are eased, according to new figures.

According to new figures measuring footfall, shops, pubs, restaurants and entertainment venues saw a boost in visitors after the reopening of indoor hospitality in May.

And there is now real hope that the final lifting of restrictions earlier this week will give Mansfield “the summer boost it needs”.

Nikki Rolls, chief executive of the Mansfield BID organisation, said: “The Mansfield community has been amazing and has really supported the hospitality businesses that we are proud to have in our town centre.

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"Business owners have shown a lot of resilience and patience, despite very trying times, and so, hopefully, things are now going in the right direction.

"Mansfield BID is working with town-centre businesses and our partner organisations, such as the council and the police, to ensure that people are as safe as possible as venues reopen.

"The message is that Mansfield is most definitely open for business.”

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The figures came from Google, which used location data from phones and other personal devices to track trends in people’s movement across the retail and recreation sector.

In the two weekends before indoor hospitality was reopened on May 17, the average activity for Mansfield’s shopping centres, pubs, cafes and restaurants was 33 per cent below normal pre-Covid levels.

But over the weekend of May 29 and 30, increased activity meant it was 17 per cent below normal levels. Over the weekends of July 3 to 4 and July 10 to 11, footfall was 20 per cent below pre-pandemic levels.

The data also covered cinemas, hotels, children’s play areas and indoor sporting and entertainment venues.

The British Retail Consortium felt that better weather in June and the success of the England football team at Euro 2020 also helped to boost trade.

Paul Martin, UK head of retail at accounting giants KPMG, pointed out that the support for retail and recreation came at a time when traditional businesses were facing greater competition from online retailers.

He said: “Retailers will be hoping that the feelgood factor from Euro 2020 and the lifting of Covid-19 restrictions will give the high street the summer boost it needs.”

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