​Good news for Edinburgh business - Angus Robertson

Shoppers are returning to Princes StreetShoppers are returning to Princes Street
Shoppers are returning to Princes Street
​There is much good news for Edinburgh’s businesses and the city’s reputation as an attractive place to shop, eat, buy and hang out.

Essential Edinburgh, a body that represents many to protect and help develop the city as a successful place to run businesses, has released its annual report which gives great insight into the state of commerce.

Average Edinburgh retail sales were up 10.5 per cent from 2022-23. Hospitality sales saw a huge average annual increase of 46.4 per cent. Scottish retail sales went up, too, with an annual average of 4.2 per cent compared to a UK average of 2.5 per cent over the same period.

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In the peak August 2022 period, retail sales were up 29 per cent and hospitality up a whopping 87 per cent compared to 2021. December 2022 retail increased by 26 per cent and hospitality by 59 per cent compared to 2021.

One of the key post-covid issues has been the decline of footfall in town and city centres. With many now working part- or full-time from home and tighter budgets, lunches and after-work shop browsing has been less common.

While not yet caught up with 2019 total figures, footfall on Edinburgh’s Princes Street—a key barometer of the health of the city centre—showed footfall recovery ahead of other parts of the UK by 7.9 per cent and 10.3 per cent in Scotland.

Essential Edinburgh’s ‘Eat Out Edinburgh’ campaign, supporting the food and drink sector saw 77 per cent of those who engaged with the campaign went on to shop, eat and drink in the city centre, spending on average £63 each.

I recommend all interested to read the full annual report available on Essential Edinburgh’s website.

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