SHOPPERS in Boston have shown enthusiasm for the post-Christmas sales this year, despite fears that the UK is falling into a second recession, store bosses have said.
Many shops in the town have seen a massive jump in year-on-year figures, with more and more people turning out to find those widely-anticipated bargains in the first few days after December 25.
Even as dawn broke on Boxing Day, dozens of people had already been through the tills at Next in Pescod Square after weeding out the cream of the crop in the popular sale.
Other shops in the town saw hundreds of thousands of people through their doors between Christmas and New Year, eager to snap up their favourite items.
Andy Pottle, manager of Pescod Sqaure, told The Standard: “What we have noticed has been quite encouraging. It started in the weeks running up to Christmas, when we had the highest footfall for four years. On December 27, sales were 14.7 per cent up. I’ve spoken to a couple of retailers and they’ve reported very positive signs.”
The Next sale opened at 6am on Boxing Day and shoppers were queuing from around 5am to make sure they got the lion’s share of the bargains. After just a couple of days many of the items on offer had gone.
Some other stores in Pescod Square which enjoyed particular success were The Officers Club and Clinton Cards, Mr Pottle said.
Coneys, on Wide Bargate, also saw more people heading in for the sales last week. The amount of people through the doors on Boxing Day was on a par with last year and December 27 saw a jump in the number of people hunting out bargains.
Sales assistant Hayley Hill said they had been worried about the effect of people tightening their belts, but people had still been finding the funds to shop.
She added: “We’re all aware more than ever this year that things were changing and people’s shopping habits are definitely changing. We’ve had a lot of people asking when the sale was going to start. They were waiting for it, because there’s only so much money to go around. We’ve not seen a decline. We’ve been OK.”
Oldrids, on Strait Bargate, said they had seen a spike in sales since Christmas.
Marcus Meadows, head of retail operations, told The Standard: “The early signs are that there has been a noticeable improvement in consumer demand during the first few days of our winter sale, resulting in improved results versus last year across the group. It should be noted that last year saw a sustained demand throughout the duration of the January sale period and the true test will be the sustainability of the current peaks in trade.”