Passengers’ need for convenience sparks growth in Christmas retail sales: New retailers in the Western Arcade at London Bridge station

Friday 18 Jan 2019

Passengers’ need for convenience sparks growth in Christmas retail sales

Region & Route:
National
  • Network Rail reports 2.3% total sales growth at its managed stations during the festive period, despite difficult wider trading environment
  • Figures point to continued trend in convenience shopping, with increasing numbers using stations as a one-stop-shop for a range of products
  • Top performing stations were London Bridge and Paddington, showing link between Network Rail investment and retail sales growth

Passengers’ appetite for convenience has driven a 2.3% growth in station retail sales over the festive period, Network Rail has announced.

The figures, which reflect sales between 10 November and 22 December, also show growth of 0.6% in like-for-like sales despite a difficult wider trading environment, with sales levels flat across the wider high-street retail sector in December.

The results reflect Network Rail’s retail strategy, which aims to place passengers at the centre of its plans and provide an attractive retail offer that suits their buying habits

In total, Network Rail recorded more than £93.8m in sales during the six weeks leading up to Christmas, with retailers in the health and beauty (+13%), food (+10%) and news, books and confectionary (+9%) sectors performing particularly well.  

There was also a 1% increase in retail footfall, comparing favourably against results in the latest BRC-Springboard and Vacancies Monitor, which showed that overall UK retail footfall was down 2.6%.

London Bridge (+74.7%), Paddington (+10.7%) and Charing Cross (+7.6%) showed the highest total sales growth in London, with the sales surges at London Bridge and Paddington correlating to Network Rail’s significant investment in regeneration and retail enhancement projects at these transport hubs.

Meanwhile, Edinburgh Waverley (+3.5%) and Birmingham New Street (+2.9%) were the best performers outside of the capital.

Every penny of profit from retail sales is reinvested back into the railway, benefiting farepayers, taxpayers and the wider economy.

David Biggs, Managing Director of Network Rail Property, said:

“We are committed to delivering a positive experience for the 900 million people who use our stations each year, and therefore any decisions we make around our retail portfolio are centred on what our passengers want.

 “Of course, there are wider challenges in the retail market and this has affected some retailers, but today’s results show that our strategy is paying off and that convenience is most definitely king, with station retail continuing to outperform the high-street.

“This is also at a time that we are investing in and upgrading our stations, which impacts on retail. However, this will have long-term positive effects - helping the railway to grow and improve for passengers, whilst creating great places for communities to thrive.”

 

Notes to Editors

All figures are compared to the same period the previous year.

Our managed stations

National stations

London stations

Birmingham New Street

Cannon Street

Bristol Temple Meads

Charing Cross

Edinburgh Waverley

Clapham Junction

Glasgow Central

Euston

Guildford

King’s Cross

Leeds

London Bridge

Liverpool Lime Street

Liverpool Street

Manchester Piccadilly

Paddington

Reading

St Pancras International

(lower level)

Retail at St Pancras is managed by HS1

 

Victoria

 

Waterloo

About Network Rail Property

Network Rail Property is the land and commercial division of Network Rail, tasked with generating funds to be reinvested back into the railway.  Our projects help deliver transport and station-led regeneration, housing, jobs and economic growth.

Contact information

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Please visit National Rail Enquiries

Journalists
Jack Harvey
Jack.Harvey2@networkrail.co.uk

About Network Rail

We own, operate and develop Britain's railway infrastructure; that's 20,000 miles of track, 30,000 bridges, tunnels and viaducts and the thousands of signals, level crossings and stations. We run 20 of the UK's largest stations while all the others, over 2,500, are run by the country's train operating companies.

Every day, there are more than 4.8 million journeys made in the UK and over 600 freight trains run on the network. People depend on Britain's railway for their daily commute, to visit friends and loved ones and to get them home safe every day. Our role is to deliver a safe and reliable railway, so we carefully manage and deliver thousands of projects every year that form part of the multi-billion pound Railway Upgrade Plan, to grow and expand the nation's railway network to respond to the tremendous growth and demand the railway has experienced - a doubling of passenger journeys over the past 20 years.

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