Edinburgh shoppers queued from 3am to snap up Boxing Day bargains

Shoppers out in force from early hours of morning

Friday, 27th December 2019, 10:33 am
Shoppers flocked to the sale at the Next store on Princes Street on Boxing Day. Picture: Stewart Attwood
Shoppers flocked to the sale at the Next store on Princes Street on Boxing Day. Picture: Stewart Attwood

BARGAIN hunters were out in force across Edinburgh and the Lothians on Boxing Day, amid fears of a bleak Christmas for retailers.

One keen customer was spotted parking their vehicle at 3.10am at Fort Kinnaird yesterday before going on to queue for eagerly anticipated sale items.

At the retail park, management also said “at least a couple of hundred” people were seen waiting outside Next before its opening.

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The chain also witnessed long queues at its Princes Street store from 4.45am.

And around the corner at Harvey Nichols, security staff were in place to deal with the long queues at both its entrances.

Across the UK, bad weather deterred some Boxing Day bargain hunters, with footfall reportedly down 10 per cent in high streets and shopping centres.

Retail experts Springboard said footfall in the period up to midday on Boxing Day had seen the largest decline since 2010.

Diane Wehrle, insights director at Springboard, said: “This result reflects a number of underlying structural changes in terms of how consumers shop with more going online, the increased spending around Black Friday, the growing demand for hospitality and experience and the fact that the number of blended families means that many consumers are still celebrating Christmas on Boxing Day with their family.

“In combination, these changes mean that Boxing Day is indisputably a less important trading day than it once was.”

Britons are expected to spend £200 million less in the post-Christmas sales this year as environmental concerns drive down buying.

Four in ten UK adults were expected to make the most of sales from Boxing Day, spending an average of £186 each and a total of £3.7 billion, according to Barclaycard. But due to concerns about the environment, 62 per cent intended to make fewer purchases, rising to 68 per cent among women.

Almost seven in ten consumers also planned to spend less on “fast fashion” because of the potential environmental impact of its production.

Rob Cameron, chief executive of Barclaycard Payments, said: “Our data for Black Friday and Cyber Monday revealed a huge jump in transaction volumes this year, so it’s not surprising that consumers expect to have less money to spend after Christmas, so retailers need to take that into account.

“What’s more, our research shows that shoppers are increasingly thinking about how their purchases impact the environment.

“Forward-thinking retailers should be making a conscious effort to demonstrate their commitment to sustainability in order to boost their appeal - and their revenue.”