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Your Plans For Returning 

We’ve enjoyed experiencing the noticeable buzz in the Quarter from 12 April with the reopening of non-essential retail, outdoor hospitality, salons and more, but it’s still a great time to make the most of our streets and spaces while numbers of workers and visitors are lower than usual but with businesses open and the usual wealth of choice available to enjoy.  

This is reflected in Transport for London’s local figures which have been given a considerable boost in recent weeks. The easing of lockdown from 12 April saw a 50% increase in tube entries to Baker Street, Bond Street or Marble Arch compared to the previous week, but this is still a way off the usual levels we are used to in the QuarterWe will continue to monitor the weekly trends to assess how things progress, after the initial reopening peak.  To view the latest updated weekly figures at any time visit our webpage here. 

We’re grateful to all businesses who’ve completed our surveys recently, both retail and office sectors. With the first stage of reopenings taking place on 12 April, we were delighted to hear that 90% of respondents planned to reopen their retail or hospitality business on that day with a further 10% reopening from 17 May with the return of indoor hospitalityanother date we are eagerly awaiting.  

We heard back from over 50 office-based businesses about their plans for returning, and current predictions are: 

  • More businesses this month are predicting 26%-50% of employees will return to the office in May compared to when we asked them last month (37.5% compared to 13%) 
  • 26%-50% of staff are predicted to return in June, July and August 
  • September sees a substantial rise in return with a big increase to 76-100% of staff expected to return  
  • Around 60% of businesses expect that, long term, workers will work 2-3 days a week at home 
  • 55% of businesses state that long term working from the office is encouraged, 20% state it is completely optional, 17% state it is obligatory and 8% say it is discouraged 

It’s interesting to see an increasing number of businesses expecting more staff to return next month. With confidence improving and more businesses firming up their plans we may see a further change in next month’s survey 

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