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Boxing Day quiet for shops - but not online
10:51am Saturday 28th December 2013 in News
Festive hangovers and foul weather combined to keep many of the city’s shoppers indoors and online on Boxing Day, MADELINE WENG & CALLUM CYRUS report.
Retail analysts forecast shoppers across the country would spend £2.97 billion by yesterday both in stores and online.
If the prediction is accurate, the total will beat last year’s figure of £2.8 billion, according to data from the British Retail Consortium and the Centre for Retail Research.
But in Brighton and Hove dire weather seemed to have dampened spirits and many shopkeepers kept their doors shut on Boxing Day.
In George Street, Hove, a few retailers bucked the trend and opened for business.
David Wiggins, assistant manager of Robert Dyas said: “This street is never too busy on Boxing Day. A lot of other shops were closed.
“We were one of the few that were still open. We were mainly doing half-price sales on some Christmas clearance.
“The shop was only slightly busier than usual, which is about the same as we expected.
“There was always a slow start, and then the people started to come out, if the weather permitted.”
Diana Moncada, shop manager of Holland and Barrett in George Street, Hove said: “On Boxing Day we had a ‘penny sale’ promotion – that is, you buy one product and get another for just one penny.
“However, it wasn’t busy at all on Boxing day. I guess it was because people think it’s a family day, instead of a shopping day.”
Amy Hunt, shop manager of nearby Dorothy Perkins, said: “Two years ago we opened on Boxing Day, and it wasn’t busy, so the company decided not to open this store this year.”
The owners of independent shops in the centre of Brighton were determined to do their best to keep commercialism out of Christmas.
Cynthia Wyndham, owner of shoe shop Pullingers, in Bond Street, said: “We don’t believe in opening on Boxing Day. Christmas should be two days and it is supposed to be a holiday and should be spent with the family.”
Maria Ramos, shopkeeper of Yoma, in Gardner Street, said: “We only close the shop on the Christmas Day, Boxing Day and the New Year. The company think it should be nice for the people to have a rest in these three days and spend time with their family.”
Soly Danish, shop manager of fashion retailer Ju-Ju on Gloucester Road, said: “We didn’t and will never open the shop on the Boxing Day. We can’t allow commercialism to take over and sacrifice the time for entertainment and family.”
Adam LeRoy, owner of mod fashion retailer Jump the Gun, in Gardner Street, said: “I think it’s wrong to open shops on Boxing Day. The world could do with one day that the shops are shut on – and I’m a shopkeeper.”
Al Childs, co-owner of Independent record store Across the Tracks in Gloucester Road, said: “To be perfectly honest it’s a brave shop that chooses to be open on Boxing Day. But Friday has been OK.
“Sales of records have been very good generally because they’ve become trendy again – lots of kids have had record players for Christmas and lots of people my age sold all their old records so they are now buying them back. There’s a market at both ends of the spectrum.”
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