Trade damaged by poor weather

W11932H13 WH PARKING CONTRACTS PIC S.G. 11.03.2013''Traders and Parking Contracts   traders in South Street Square
W11932H13 WH PARKING CONTRACTS PIC S.G. 11.03.2013''Traders and Parking Contracts traders in South Street Square

THE coldest March weather since the early 1960s has had a significant impact on trading performance for businesses within Worthing.

Town centre manager Sharon Clarke explained the poor conditions, which have included several days of snow, had put shoppers off venturing out.

Despite this, she said there were signs over Easter that trade for a number of stores was beginning to pick up.

She remained optimistic that initiatives such as the artificial beach for South street, market days, and the Birdman event would boost summer trade.

Footfall figures for March were down 18 per cent as against last year’s results, following on from a 16 per cent dip in February.

Traders have petitioned the county council to remove NCP parking, which they claim along with internet trading and out-of-town supermarkets, has had a negative impact.

Mrs Clarke said: “The footfall results have not been good this year, but in a way we have been a victim of our own success in registering higher than average figures last year.

“The results are now back to those of around 2010. When it snowed, we only had around 2,000 people a day in town compared to an average of 15,000, which had a huge impact.”