PAUL O’BRIEN: Worthing footfall bucks national trend

Paul O'Brien
Paul O'Brien
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One of the measures we have in place in the town, which allows us to tell how busy Worthing is, is a footfall monitor.

This is a small camera on Montague Street which counts the number of people passing by on a daily basis.

Most towns have one and, in fact, so do larger businesses – it allows them to convert the amount of people coming in to the amount of sales they have during the day.

Ours is much simpler and purely counts people passing by.

The UK average footfall showed a decrease last year of around two per cent, while looking specifically at our corner of the country, the South East, this showed a 2.9 per cent decline on last year’s figures.

You would think we would be on par with these figures, however over the course of 2015 Worthing proved doubters wrong and actually showed and increase of 2.9 per cent.

It was also great to see that on the second Saturday in December Worthing’s footfall counter showed its highest reading in over five years, with just over 35,000 people recorded in the town during the day.

While these figures are only to be taken with a pinch of salt, it does show that while most towns sit with many empty shopping units Worthing is almost full to the rafters with new business opening left, right and centre at present.

It’s also good to see the slow refilling of the Guildbourne Centre, with three of the vacant units being taken over and opening soon.

Most towns do have a great undercover shopping area and hopefully with the rejuvenation of both this and the Montague Centre we will boast some great covered shopping facilities in the near future.

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