YORK'S city centre was more than ten per cent busier in March than the same month last year - pushing the city ahead of national and regional footfall increases.

Figures taken from a camera situated in Parliament Street between March 3 and April 6 show there was a rise of 10.6 per cent in the number of passers by compared to the same period last year.

The newly released statistics show York to be one of the top performing high streets regionally and nationally, with average footfall increases for both standing a 2.4 per cent.

The news has been welcomed by City of York Council, with the authority's leader Councillor James Alexander hoping for further increases.

He said: "These figures demonstrate that the strong retail and cultural offering that the city centre has continues to draw residents and visitors at this time of year. It is hoped that the footfall in the city centre will only increase further with the city’s new one year parking pilot, which after listening to the concerns of businesses, looks to support local businesses, residents and visitors.

“It is particularly encouraging to note the increased footfall recorded in comparison to last year and it is pleasing to see that the council is defying both the national and regional trends with these statistics.”