Oxford Street Closure

MQT on 2007-01-30
Session date: 
January 30, 2007
Question By: 
Jenny Jones
City Hall Greens
Asked Of: 
The Mayor


What was the customer satisfaction for the closure of Oxford Street to traffic, including those people who could not attend through disability, and has there been an analysis of the economic benefits?


Answer for Oxford Street Closure

Answer for Oxford Street Closure

Answered By: 
The Mayor

The Shop West End - Very Important Pedestrians event on 2 December 2006 attracted over 1 million people during the course of the day, representing a 17 per cent increase in footfall over the same Saturday in 2005 and a 37 per cent increase over the previous Saturday. While there was no systematic customer satisfaction survey carried out, research by Manning Gottlieb for Visit London showed that 29 per cent of those visiting the area covered by the closure were attracted by the traffic free environment and the opportunity for a family day out; 69 per cent of those surveyed said that they had a better perception of the area after experiencing the day. Although I am aware of concerns expressed by residents groups about the arrangements for traffic on the day, only two complaints were received by the event organisers.Again, no specific research was carried out with regard to those who did not attend. However, no issues relating to accessibility problems for disabled people have been raised with those involved in organising the event. The New West End Company has surveyed retailers in the area concerned about the economic benefits of the day. This showed an average increase in sales of between 15 and 20 per cent year-on-year and that the increase in footfall was accompanied by a length in the time people spent in the area. There was very considerable media coverage of the event, reaching 50 million people; the editorial value of this coverage has been estimated a over £2.7 million. The research for Visit London referred to earlier indicated an incremental increase in spending due to the event of £6.7 million - a return of 104:1 on the financial assistance it gave towards organisation of the event.