Last minute dash is Christmas gift

04 January 2018

A last minute dash to the shops prior to Christmas was good news for Bedford retailers.

A rise in footfall of + 26.8% in Bedford, compared to the previous week, saw town tills jingling.

“We came through strongly with a last-minute rush to the retailers, which we have been promoting all year,” said Christina Rowe, Director of the Bedford Business Improvement District (BID) which markets the town centre under the Love Bedford brand,

“The snow earlier in December probably contributed to a drop in visitors, combined with reports of rises in on-line shopping in 2017. But this was the same for all town centres. Where Bedford scored was in that last week.”

Sales of the Love Bedford gift vouchers hit the £1 Million mark prior to Christmas and added to this on-line sales trebled in December compared to the same month in 2016. Meanwhile visitors to Arcadia sweetshop bought thousands of pounds worth of vouchers over the counter - as an extra treat for family and friends. Those vouchers will be redeemed in January and the rest of 2018-  thus keeping customers coming back to Bedford to be spent in more than 270 outlets.

Meanwhile restaurants and cafes benefitted from the retail rush during the day and with office and group gathering at night. 

 A spokesperson for the recently opened Albero Lounge at the new Riverside Bedford Dave Hardman added that he was delighted with their first Christmas and New Year in Bedford which was a success beyond expectations.

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