Fashion sales at John Lewis suffered a year-on-year decline last week owing, it said, to warmer than average weather.

Overall sales at John Lewis department store fell 4.6% to £86.4m in the seven days to October 14, with revenues in its fashion department down 5.1%.

Despite the drop in fashion, the retailer said beauty sales were up 4.3%. Fragrance sets sales rose 3% as shoppers started their Christmas shopping.

Home sales were down 2% in the seven days, while electricals and home technology sales dropped 6.7% year-on-year.


At upmarket grocer Waitrose, sales excluding fuel edged up 0.7% to £127.62m.

It said the warmer than average temperatures resulted in relatively summery sales patterns, with products such as quiche, dips and soft fruit proving popular – up 14%, 8% and 15% respectively.

Organised shoppers started buying advent calendars, with sales 82% higher than this time last year.

It added that there are 28% more delivery slots booked in for Christmas week than at this point last year.

Across the partnership, sales slipped 1.5% year-on-year to £214.02m.