Norwich one of UK’s slowest cities to recover from virus, according to report

PUBLISHED: 11:55 23 July 2020 | UPDATED: 18:22 23 July 2020

Norwich is one of the cities which has been slowest to recover from lockdown. Picture: DENISE BRADLEY

Norwich is one of the cities which has been slowest to recover from lockdown. Picture: DENISE BRADLEY


Norwich has been identified as one of the slowest cities to recover from the coronavirus lockdown.

According to new data from the Centre for Cities, Norwich is among the ten slowest cities to bounce back from the virus.

However, the data may not paint an unnecessarily bleak picture as it is based on high street footfall as opposed to spending and confidence.

The data is collected on a pre-lockdown basis of 100, and measures how many people have been venturing into the city since.

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The indicator shows an index dip to just 14 points at the beginning of April, which has slowly crept up to 52 as of July 7.

The overall index since lockdown has begun therefore lies at an average of 48 – compared to some areas which are now seeing more people visiting their street than the weeks running up to the prime minister locking the country down.

Among the busiest areas are Basildon with an index of 104 and Birkenhead at 103.

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Also in the bottom ten are cities including London, Birmingham and Leeds.

The data also gives breakdowns of where people are travelling from to reach Norwich.

Prior to lockdown the majority of visitor to the city – 57pc – were coming from outside the city.

This was followed by 39pc of people coming from the suburbs and 4pc from within the city itself.

However now 5pc of footfall is from city dwellers, with 48pc travelling from the suburbs and 47pc travelling from outside the area entirely.

The same trend can be seen when it comes to workers going about their day in the city.

Prior to lockdown the majority of workers were commuting from outside the city at 52pc.

However since Boris Johnson and his government encouraged people to work from home, this has swung to 36pc of workers coming from outside the city, with 40pc travelling from the suburbs and city dwellers making up 23pc.

Norwich’s nightlife has also taken a hit.

Ahead of lockdown the city’s index stood at 106 points with customers shaking off anxiety about an imminent closing of shutters.

However since then customers have stayed away, with the index still low at just shy of 33 points.

Of those heading out almost half are from the suburbs, where previously the vast majority travelled from outside the city area.

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