High street still struggling

Paisley high street
The high street continues to suffer.

SCOTLAND’S high streets continue to suffer under the weight of coronavirus restrictions, with retail sales markedly below 2019 levels.

Figures produced for the Scottish Retail Consortium (SRC) by KPMG revealed that while total food sales for the five weeks to 4 July were up 4% against 2019, total retail sales decreased by 18.6% over the same period.

With food removed from the equation, total retail sales decreased by 19.4%, above the three-month average decline of 34.3%, but below the 12-month average decline of 12.1%.

SRC director David Lonsdale commented on the latest figures: “Scottish retail sales remained in a funk last month, down by almost a fifth on the same period last year.

“This was the fourth successive month of double-digit decline.

“Last month’s performance lagged well behind that of the UK as a whole, unsurprising after more than three full months of lockdown.

“June did at least witness an improvement on recent lows, aided by the re-opening of many ‘non-essential’ shops in the final week of trading period.”