Establishing a footfall baseline

The purpose of this resource is to show you how to conduct a footfall baseline count. It will help local authorities, including those that have been allocated monies from the £50m ‘Reopening High Streets Safely’ Fund and that will be using footfall as an indicator in their reporting to MHCLG.

Date added 15 June 2020
Last updated 30 June 2020

The purpose of this resource is to show you how to conduct a footfall baseline count. It will help local authorities, including those that have been allocated monies from the £50m ‘Reopening High Streets Safely’ Fund and that will be using footfall as an indicator in their reporting to MHCLG.

This resource offers a series of guidelines and recommendations to make this manual footfall data collection as easy as possible. It guides the selection of a counting location, it suggests a manual counting technique and schedule, and it offers a series of tips of how to best approach data collection while in the field.

A manual baseline count will enable you to record what your footfall levels are before lockdown measures are fully eased and, ideally, before funded interventions are put in place. Nevertheless, because of the speed at which high streets and town centres are having to be adapted, in order to welcome people back safely, we appreciate many projects will have already started/completed. You should still undertake a manual footfall count as soon as possible – as footfall is expected to be reduced for some time.

In this document you will find information on:

  • The importance of footfall data
  • Manually collecting footfall data
  • Preparing for fieldwork
  • Upgrading to a full manual counting programme and standard dashboard

In this document you can also find an interactive counting exercise to practice manual footfall counting. 

All the additional materials needed to perform a manual footfall count can also be found in this resource in pdf format. Word versions of these additional materials can be found as separate resources here: Risk Assessment, Information Sheet, Counting Sheet