John Lewis thanked World Cup fever for a 20 per cent jump in sales last week as it saw more customers splash out on new flat-screen televisions ahead of the football tournament.
The department store's electricals and technology department was the busiest of the group's three divisions during the week to last Saturday, with sales up 27 per cent on a year ago. The fashion and home departments posted growth of 19 per cent and 18 per cent respectively, with World Cup stock selling well in sports and childrenswear.
At Waitrose, sales rose 6.1 per cent, helped by warm half-term weather. Fruit sales were up nearly a third, driven by sales of lemons after Heston Blumenthal promoted a lemon tart recipe in the grocer's ad campaign.