Sumary of Survey suggests UK workers are beginning to return to city centres:
- With some firms offering free food and gifts to tempt staff back, one barometer of activity around central London offices recorded an increase of almost 5%.
- Data experts Springboard said that between Tuesday and Friday, footfall was 4.9% up on the previous week, based on its London office block tracker.
- Pret became a poster child for the turmoil caused by the Covid-19 pandemic as travel restrictions and home working emptied shops that had deliberately been sited close to offices and train stations to serve commuters.
- But Pano Christou, the chief executive of the sandwich and coffee chain, said in a weekend interview that he was feeling optimistic about trading in city centres after employees returning to offices last week drove a rise in sales of 15% in just seven days.
- The first full week after the school holidays had been the “acid test” to gauge the scale of workers returning to areas such as the City of London after a switch to remote working, he told the Mail on Sunday.
- Diane Wehrle, Springboard’s insights director, said footfall around offices in central London was noticeably stronger than for the previous week but had “tailed off” as the week progressed.