Biggest shopping week of the year to bring £12billion boost to stores and pubs

THE biggest shopping week of the year will bring a £12billion shot in the arm for stores and pubs as Brits back our call to put your dosh where your heart is.

Vaccine optimism is boosting spending this week for much-loved crisis-hit high streets after months of online shopping.

Brits will splash 20 per cent more per person than usual, retail insiders say.

Around £7billion will be spent in stores, a study with the Centre for Retail Research (CRR) predicts.

And £5billion will be splashed online. Half of that will go to high street retailers’ websites.

The CRR’s Prof Joshua Bamfield said: “This will be the biggest spending week of the year so far. Optimism about the vaccine is strengthening consumer confidence and spending.”

Up to 150,000 shoppers are expected daily across Westfield’s malls in West London and Stratford, 70,000 at Bluewater, Kent, 70,000 at Sheffield’s Meadowhall and 60,000 at Bristol’s Cabot Circus.

London’s Oxford Street was packed yesterday — but in Nottingham, the Christmas market was shut down after “unprecedented high footfall” sparked Covid fears on Saturday.

Shopping fever comes as small businesses urge Chancellor Rishi Sunak to use the £1.8billion of tax breaks returned by ­supermarkets last week to help Britain’s high street bounce back from Covid.

Pubs are also cashing in as Brits happily eat and drink in beer gardens with pals, despite the chilly weather.

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