Sales at John Lewis department stores surged 5.3 per cent last week, despite big sporting events and volatile weather that might have kept shoppers at home.
The rise was boosted by “a one-off correction to first-half sales of fitted kitchens”, without which the uplift would have been 2.9 per cent.
Sales at sister chain Waitrose climbed 12.7 per cent in the week to July 18, bringing the total rise for parent John Lewis Partnership to 9.7 per cent.
John Lewis region B director of selling operations David Barford said the department store chain had a strong week despite a “smorgasbord” of factors such as the Ashes, the Open and “four seasons in a day”.
Electricals and technology did well, he said, and fashion climbed 6.5 per cent year on year thanks to a combination of clearance promotions and sales of new-season lines. He said that there had been a “fantastic result” in the home category as shoppers snapped up furniture clearance deals.
Waitrose supply chain director Mark Williamson reported that total food sales soared 11.7 per cent and the 13 stores acquired from Somerfield were “contributing strongly”.
The grocer has added another 18 products to its essential Waitrose range, which now carries almost 900 items. The range now accounts for 15 per cent of Waitrose’s total sales and is up 16 per cent year on year.
Williamson said: “Many household staples have benefited from the rebranding, with tomato ketchup and brown sauce seeing an uplift of 82 per cent.”