UK retail sales grew 2.8% in September on a like-for-like basis, according to the BRC-KPMG Retail Sales Monitor.

Sales included Bank Holiday Sunday and Monday, and compared to a weak September last year meaning total sales were up 4.9% on a year ago.

Food sales growth continued to slow largely due to lower food price inflation while non-food sales grew 0.8% on a like-for-like basis, helped by some improvement in consumer confidence and the housing market.

For non-food non-store sales –including internet, mail-order and order made by phone- sales were up 11.9% on last year compared to a growth of 7.9% in August. However this growth could now be impacted by the postal strike. 

KPMG head of retail Helen Dickinson said: “The results for September and the rest of 2009 need to be considered in the light of last year’s performance, which weakened as the year progressed.  However, the pick-up in this month’s figures is stronger than expected.” 

She added: “Sunny autumn weather and signs of a less gloomy economic outlook have boosted non-food sales, particularly in children’s clothing and footwear, and furniture and flooring.”