Data shows Harrogate high street is in top 10 in UK for bounce back from Covid

New figures show that Harrogate has seen one of the most impressive recoveries in the entire UK in the three months since non-essential retail businesses re-opened after Easter.

Monday, 2nd August 2021, 5:02 pm
Welcoming back shoppers - Flashback to when the doors reopened at Harrogate shop Pandora. (Picture Gerard Binks)

Datas in the latest Ipsos’ Retail Recovery Index estimates that Harrogate's high street is in the UK top ten for the strength of its bounce back from Covid after the rules began to be relaxed on Monday 12 April.

The figures also show that Central London locations suffered the worst footfall comparisons, with the City of London down -68.9% and the West End -49.9% when compared to the same period in 2019.

Explaining the findings, Oliver Hillier, senior retail analyst at Ipsos, said: “Our Retail Recovery Index shows that, after a difficult period of lockdown, shoppers are keen to return to high streets. The North East and East Midlands have seen a strong recovery, particularly driven by footfall in cities such as Newcastle-upon-Tyne and Derby."

“Central London destinations continue to see footfall lag behind the rest of the country but we expect to see this situation improve as leisure venues reopen and more workers return to offices."

"The success of smaller cities like Salisbury also highlights that many shoppers have continued to visit stores close to their homes, rather than visiting major cities such as Birmingham, Manchester and Leeds.

"However, the attributes that made these cities shopping destinations remain as we expect to see their footfall levels rise over the coming months.”

The cathedral city of Salisbury beat off competition from Harrow, Worcester and Merry Hill in Dudley to take top spot, as consumers continue to shop locally rather than visiting larger cities.

But footfall nationally was down by -34.6% on its 2019 level over the same period.

Top 10 bounce-back retail locations according to Ipsos’ Retail Recovery Index

1. Salisbury

2. Harrow

3. Worcester

4. Dudley - Merry Hill

5. Wakefield

6. Harrogate

7. Newcastle-upon-Tyne

8. Falkirk

9. Brent Cross

10. Kingston upon Thames

The Retail Recovery Index tracks levels of footfall across the UK following the re-opening of non-essential retail on 12 April.

The data is constructed from the number of shoppers entering stores using a nationally representative sample of over 4000 retail outlets across the UK, excluding the grocery, convenience and minor retail service sectors.

For more information about Ipsos visit