TEST Valley customers were happy to pick up the bill last week, figures suggest, as spending in restaurants rose when diners were allowed indoors.

Banking firm Revolut analysed the data of its 9,000 customers in Test Valley in the seven days to May 23, as they sat down inside restaurants and cafes for the first time this year.

Diners spent 43 per cent more over this period than they did the previous week when only outdoor dining was permitted, with one bill coming to a hefty £297.60.

However, spending was still 24 per cent below a normal week in February last year before the pandemic began.

Spending in restaurants and cafes across Great Britain saw a larger fall, of 41 per cent.

Despite reopening, many establishments will be unable to have a full house until June 21, when all legal limits on social contact are due to be lifted in England.

However, Health Secretary Matt Hancock previously said it is too early to say whether the easing of all restrictions will still go ahead as planned.

Last week also saw the reopening of many indoor entertainment and cultural venues, including museums, theatres and cinemas – though they too are operating at reduced capacity.

Revolut data shows that spending on cultural activities such as cinema trips between May 17-23 was 68 per cent below a normal pre-pandemic week in Britain.

In Test Valley, spending was 51 per cent down, with 45-54 year-old men the biggest spenders in the area.

Overall, Test Valley residents spent 4 per cent more on all activities over this period than they did the week before, including a 21 per cent rise on transport expenditure.