A large number of Fife shoppers seem to be heading to Dundee but not for its atmosphere.
Dundee is the most popular shopping destination outside Fife for residents of the region, but only 7% of 2190 people surveyed said they would go there for its general ambiance.
Only 1% rated Dundee’s cleanliness and appearance as a drawing point.
The survey was carried out by market research consultants on behalf of Fife Council, at a cost of £17,975 excluding VAT.
Dundee and Angus Chamber of Commerce chief executive Alan Mitchell stepped in to defend the city.
He said although Dundee had its faults, proposals such as developing the waterfront would vastly improve its appeal for visitors.
“I would say that Dundee isn’t as bad as these figures make out, certainly not compared to the rest of Scotland,” he said.
“I don’t think anyone would say that Dundee was perfect, but I don’t think that could be said of any town centre in Scotland.
“Dundee offers people a good shopping and leisure experience but, like anywhere else, it could do a bit better and there are people working and striving to make that happen.”
Despite the city being perceived as lacking in aesthetic appeal, Dundee’s range of shops meant a 10th of what Fifers spent on non-food items such as clothes went to cash registers across the Tay.
Glenrothes, on the other hand, struggled to attract shoppers despite being centrally located and home to the Kingdom Shopping Centre it shared only 7% of non-food expenditure. Respondents to the survey said Glenrothes needed more clothes shops.
Kirkcaldy was most popular in terms of spending on non-food items, sharing 30% of expenditure, followed by Dunfermline at 25%, then Dundee, followed by Edinburgh at 8%.
Perth, St Andrews, Leven and Livingston attracted only very small percentages of non-food trade.
Fife Council’s planning committee considered a report detailing the findings of the survey yesterday.
The report said, “The influence of Dundee and, to a lesser extent, of Perth on the shopping patterns of residents of north-east Fife is very significant.”