Shoppers out in force for final weekend before Christmas
- Credit: DANIELLE BOODEN
Shops reported a "really busy" final weekend of trading before Christmas - although some found their stores less packed than they might have been, as people adhered to coronavirus restrictions.
The last weekend before Christmas coincided with prime minister Boris Johnson's announcement of stricter rules over the festive period.
Fiona Coe, marketing manager for independent retailer Coes, in Norwich Road, Ipswich, felt the announcement led to a quieter Sunday of trading.
"Yesterday was a relatively good day – people in getting a few last minute things," Mrs Coe said on Sunday.
"And then today has been a little bit quieter.
You may also want to watch:
"We've noticed this as a little bit of a trend throughout the whole pandemic.
"Usually when there's a big announcement, it's quiet for a day or so afterwards then it picks up again afterwards.
- 1 Cyclist, 65, who died in Bury crash is named by police
- 2 New survey reveals Suffolk's property hotspots
- 3 Construction starts on project to build 330 homes in Bury St Edmunds
- 4 Suffolk chain carries out improvement works as lockdown stalls anniversary celebrations
- 5 'Get down and have a drink' - Suffolk pub landlady wants support to continue
- 6 WATCH: Drone footage of crane towering above Bury St Edmunds
- 7 Barn goes up in flames in Suffolk village
- 8 Joy for first-time buyers as 5% deposit mortgages return
- 9 Frustrated Suffolk farmer returns dumped items to householders
- 10 Theft of historic Royal Mail post boxes 'a worrying trend'
"People just take some time to absorb it. But then in a day or so they will say we just need to reassess and make the best of whatever we can do."
Elsewhere in town, traders said both days of the weekend had been busy.
Lawra Stubbs, who runs Miss Quirky Kicks in Orwell Place, said: "It's definitely been a busy one.
"It's been weird – one minute it has been really busy, then it will be quiet the next. But overall it has been a really good weekend."
Across the whole of the Christmas shopping period, Miss Stubbs said that slower takings in the shop, compared to last year, had been balanced out by increased online orders.
In Bury St Edmunds, René van den Oort, owner of Beautiful Beers on St John's Street, said: "It's been really busy actually.
"Although footfall didn't seem that high, we've had lots of people in the shop.
"I think people have started shopping with a purpose rather than just wandering about and diving into shops to have a look around.
"Now people just come into town, get what they need and just go back home again. It's the right attitude I think."