Last month was the best June for the UK high street in six years, with the warm weather significantly boosting sales as it brought out the shoppers in droves.
According to the latest BDO High Street Sales Tracker, retailers saw overall sales increase by 1.3 per cent compared to June last year, which was off a base of minus 3.6 per cent but follows four months of no growth.
High street like-for-like sales had been hit by fashion’s continued decline in May, dropping 1.3 per cent throughout that month.
Nonetheless, last month saw fashion sales go up by 1.4 per cent year-on-year as shoppers overhauled their wardrobes for the June heatwave.
Meanwhile, like-for-like sales of lifestyle goods went up by 1.2 per cent, boosted by strong tourist numbers and Father’s Day, and homeware sales edged up 0.5 per cent.
Non-store sales went down slightly during the hot weather before making a comeback at end of June for 22.2 per cent overall like-for-like growth.
Despite the promising figures, the BDO warned that last year’s post-Brexit referendum sales slump needed to be taken into account.
“This time last year the EU referendum outcome led to reluctance by consumers to spend, making it the high street’s worst June in a decade,” BDO head of retail Sophie Michael said.
“This June, consumers were distracted by a general election, but that didn’t stop them heading to the shops when the sun came out.
“Retailers will take heart from consumers’ willingness to spend, but there is evidence shoppers are delving into their savings which is clearly not a sustainable position.
“With real earnings falling which will inevitably result in consumers to tighten their belts, product range and the retail experience will be ever more important factors together with discount offers to encourage spending.”