JANUARY 2021 saw a 59 per cent decrease in alcoholic spends in Reading, despite a national increase in transactions compared with 2020.

New data from secure payments provider Dojo showed that in January 2020, consumers were purchasing an average of £61 worth of alcohol per visit to shops, compared to January 2021 where this took a hit to only £25.

Reading saw the biggest decrease in alcohol sales in all the areas that recorded a drop, with Gloucester, Leeds, Bradford and Glasgow following.

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Reading saw the biggest decrease in spending but this could be due to movement away from cities such as London, with many of us travelling back to home towns or moving to greener pastures in more rural areas.

Jon Knott, Head of Customer Insights at Dojo, part of the Paymentsense brand said: “Typically a time for detox, lockdown fatigue has made us rethink dry January, with more of us finding ways to entertain ourselves with a drink or two on a Zoom call with friends.

"It’s perhaps unsurprising that there is an increase in sales of alcohol, however, because we may be drinking more frequently, we’re seeing a higher average sale cost per transaction.

"This means we could be swapping the weekend drinks for more throughout the week."

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Ipswich had the biggest increase in alcohol sales at 166 per cent.

Oxford saw an increase of 83 per cent and Southampton saw a 48 per cent increase.

Nottingham followed with a 47 per cent increase.