30 per cent increase proves bank holiday washout fears unfounded
John Lewis produced a strong set of figures for the week that included the bank holiday as the sun finally decided to shine across large parts of the UK. Sales rose by 9.1 per cent against last year to nearly£45 million.

The results put the department store operator 11.6 per cent ahead for the first 18 weeks of its financial year. Despite fears that the bank holiday might prove a washout, sales on the day rose 30 per cent, driven, according to the retailer, by the start of half term and an extra day of trading in the Reading and Peterborough stores.

Top of the John Lewis trading league were the Peterborough, Edinburgh, High Wycombe, Reading and Liverpool stores with Newcastle and Bluewater also performing well.

Perhaps unsurpisingly, given the imminent World Cup kick-off, sales of electricals and home technology produced the best results overall with sales of flat-panel televisions in particular being exceptional.