The Harry Styles effect

Harry Styles fans sparked a business boost for shops and restaurants at Wembley Park and London Designer Outlet ahead of the former One Direction heartthrob’s sold-out gigs at Wembley Stadium.

Total sales across the 15-minute neighbourhood and the leading premium outlet destination soared by +76% last weekend compared to the overall average for each weekend throughout May.

London Designer Outlet (LDO) alone reported a sharp spike in footfall in the run-up to Styles’ shows on Saturday and Sunday, with the figure sitting at over a third higher (+36%) compared to the May weekend average.

Sales at sports and athleisure brands at the outlet climbed by nearly two-thirds (+64%), mixed fashion by a third (+33%), health and beauty by +24% and accessories and gifts by +18%. Outdoor brands enjoyed a +24% lift in trade, with Trespass selling out of raincoats and tents as concert-goers lined up to protect themselves against the weekend’s dreary weather.

Hospitality businesses also received a much-needed boost, with sales at LDO up by +10% over the course of the weekend compared to the previous month.

The superstar’s effect on shoppers came weeks after celebrations for the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee saw a bumper trading weekend for LDO and Wembley Park, during which thousands of revellers descended on the neighbourhood for a Jubilee Dance Party. On Saturday June 4, footfall at LDO peaked at up +90% on Saturday 4 June compared to the same time a year earlier.

Matt Slade, retail director at Quintain, said: “Despite economically turbulent times, visitors continue to flock back in greater numbers than 2019 to enjoy the unparalleled combined retail and leisure offer set within this dynamic and diverse 15-minute neighbourhood.”

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