The British Retail Consortium (BRC) says retail recovery across the UK remains at risk from coronavirus restrictions.
Responding to the latest ONS Retail Sales Index figures, which showed an 5.8 per cent increase in overall sales, Helen Dickinson, Chief Executive of the BRC, said:
“The retail recovery remains fragile as the industry enters the all-important Christmas period, with November and December typically accounting for over a fifth of annual sales. While food and online retail continued to show strong growth, high street shopping has struggled in recent months, with footfall still down by over a third. Tighter government restrictions have taken their toll on fashion and beauty sales, while home office and computing equipment has benefitted.”
Adding: “Retailers have spent hundreds of millions to make stores Covid-secure and keep staff and customers safe. Furthermore, they are encouraging the public to shop early for Christmas and prevent the last minute rush, so that everyone – from shoppers to warehouse workers – have the space they need to stay safe and well. Retail has proven itself to be a responsible industry during this pandemic, and government should not risk the retail recovery by closing stores during the all-important run up to Christmas.”
For further information about the Government measures to protect individuals and businesses, visit our COVID-19: Support for UK businesses hub.