Bluewater shopping centre experienced a 2.1 per cent uplift in sales in July on the back of rising fashion sales.

Apparel sales increased 3.3 per cent, with retailers reporting a strong demand for knitwear due to the poor weather, as well as formal fashion as shoppers bought items for summer events.

Bluewater, in Kent, highlighted that the centre’s sales are outperforming those in the wider UK retailer sector, with the BRC-KPMG Retail Sales monitor this week reporting that non-food sales grew 1.8 per cent last month.

Bluewater’s John Lewis Foodhall opened on August 6, and has traded above expectations so far, according to the retailer.

Managing director of John Lewis Bluewater Simon Russell said: “Our recent £21.9 million investment in the branch has created a brand new Foodhall, as well as refurbished other areas of our shop.  

“We have been very pleased with the response to the Foodhall, which has traded above our expectations so far.

“Other refurbished departments have also seen a sharp increase in sales.”