Seasonal lines boosted
Cold weather continued to boost sales at the John Lewis Partnership last week, as the chilly temperatures encouraged shoppers to stock up on warm clothes and winter food.

John Lewis notched up a 7.6 per cent like-for-like sales increase for the week ending November 26. 'It is amazing what the cold weather can do to boost the sales of seasonal lines,' said John Lewis corporate affairs director Nigel Brotherton. However, he added: 'Replenishment is a significant challenge when trade accelerates sharply and unexpectedly, as it has done in recent weeks.'

As winter set in, the Partnership generated good sales of hot-water bottles, men's slippers and duvets.

Electricals and home technology continued to outstrip other categories, with a 24.3 per cent sales increase on the same period last year.

At Waitrose, the positive sales pattern was similar. Waitrose personnel director Janice Doherty said: 'The threat of severe weather certainly led to customers stocking up on cold winter food.'

Orders of organic turkeys were up significantly for the week, as were sales of non-food.