Figures reveal Leeds shoppers' splurge and spending in pubs since lockdown reopening
Leeds shoppers welcomed the reopening of non-essential shops last week with a spending spree, figures suggest.
Banking firm Revolut found a 69 per cent average increase in spending from April 12 to 18, according to data from its 32,000 Leeds customers.
This was the week that non-essential shops were allowed to open following lockdown, with T K Maxx being the most popular shop for spending in Leeds.
The first day of trading on April 12 saw even higher levels of spending, with 197 per cent more splurged than on the average Monday in February of last year.
All the data was compared to the average weekly spend in February 2020 before lockdown started.
Revolut said the data shows there is strong demand right across the country, with many people eager to spend savings built up since non-essential shops closed on January 5.
With bars lacking outdoor space not able to serve drinks yet, spending in Leeds pubs was 38 per cent down on February last year.
However, the Revolut data suggests pub-goers spent more than usual when buying rounds, with the average transaction in pubs in the area at £13.01 last week.
This was up 48 per cent on the typical spend of £8,78 across an average week before the pandemic.
The average round across England last week was £16.03, leaving Leeds drinkers spending less than in other areas across the country.
Hospitality data specialists at CGA said operational constraints and the unpredictable British weather mean three in four venues in England are still closed.
Revolut spokesman Nicholas Taylor said: "Importantly, spending was up across the whole week – rather than just the first day – suggesting that consumer confidence is resilient.
"This is great news for the thousands of local pubs, cafes and shops, and the millions of people they employ."
The British Retail Consortium said stores have worked hard to provide customers with a "safe and enjoyable" shopping experience, and it expects footfall to increase as more outlets reopen.
Chief executive Helen Dickinson added: “With case numbers continuing to drop, retailers hope that confidence will return to high streets, shopping centres and retail parks, and encourage UK consumers to release some of the £160 billion saved up during this pandemic.
"By unlocking consumer savings, UK retail has a key role to play in the wider economic recovery.”
Karl Chessell, CGA’s business unit director, added: "While some may open over the next few weeks, we will have to wait another four weeks until it is feasible for many hospitality venues to reopen again.
"Until then, operators deserve support from local authorities to make the most of outdoor trading space – not to mention some sunshine.”