John Lewis takings 17% ahead of last year
The John Lewis Partnership, which is seen as a barometer of British retailing, said that in the week to November 14, takings were up 17% on the same period a year ago.
However, while the figures compare with a period of financial turmoil, they are also ahead of 2007 levels by half a million pounds.
The renowned employee-owned department store and owner of the Waitrose supermarket said consumers had started Christmas shopping in earnest, despite the bad storms that affected parts of the country on Saturday.
The chain said sales were boosted by demand for radios, TVs and DVDs, as well as and Christmas decorations and children‘s toys.
Furthermore, the company said it had experienced a significant rise in sales of home furnishings such as beds, bedding, cushions and curtains.
Andrew Murphy, director of operational development for John Lewis, comments: “This week’s sales figures are a clear sign that Christmas shopping has begun in earnest.
“Despite challenging weather conditions on Saturday, our customers came out in force to buy gifts, decorations and in particular products for the home in advance of Christmas entertaining,” added Mr Murphy.