Shopping tribes of Britain

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It’s beloved by royals and the Chelsea set, but home store General Trading Company is under threat. So which other social stereotypes have a retail relationship they couldn’t live without?

Yummy mummies
Whole Foods, Boden, Jo Malone

The YM might have three children under five but she’ll be damned if she’s seen out looking less than radiant. Her typical buy is another reusable cotton bag and some Dr Hauschka Rose Day Cream. Also seen in: Brora. Poster girl: Nigella Lawson

Foxtons, Ugg, Cutler and Gross

Like, Dad left me all this money? And it’s, like, a bit of a nightmare? Yes, life is so hard, Miss Trustafarian, slopping around W11 in your Ugg boots on your way to Starbucks for yet another “script meeting”. Also seen in: Urban Outfitters. Poster girl: Alice Dellal

General Trading Company, Hackett, Links of London

Sloanes are frightened of stores they didn’t go to with their parents. When they do shop, it’s usually for replacements for the white jeans and pearl earrings that were lost in Hampshire last weekend. Also seen in: Crabtree & Evelyn. Poster girl: Liz Hurley

La Senza, Electric Beach tanning salon, Cricket

Since footballers aren’t famous for their brains, a young lady hoping to snare one must indicate her desirability by dyeing herself orange and skipping round town in a denim miniskirt the size of a postcard. Matching underwear, in beige silk, is essential. Also seen in: Tiffany. Poster girl:Coleen McLoughlin

Paul bakery, Paperchase, John Sandoe Books

His second novel is going badly and he spent the advance from the first on an Aeron chair. He might have to go back to writing obituaries to make ends meet! Nabokov never had problems like this. Also seen in: corduroy slacks. Poster boy: Martin Amis

The shire set
John Lewis, Waitrose, Waterstone’s

When you live a 20-minute drive from civilisation and the vet’s coming at midday, there’s no time to browse. So: new sheets in John Lewis, and cleaning supplies for Mrs P, the cleaner, from Waitrose. Also seen in: Bicester Village. Icon: Delia Smith

Hedge funders
Bang & Olufsen, Daylesford Organics, Ralph Lauren

They haven’t got a clue what a pint of milk costs, but then, nobody else at Goldman’s does either. It all gets lost in a £600 weekly grocery bill anyway. Also seen in: Prada. Poster boy: Arpad Busson

Halfords, Traid, Body Shop

Tofu is really, really, nice. Honestly. You should cycle everywhere and share your bathwater. But energy-saving light-bulbs are a step too far; the horrible light they give off is so unflattering. Also seen in: garden centres. Poster boy: Zac Goldsmith

Teen queens
Superdrug, Primark, Krispy Kreme

Ohmigod, when you’ve got £10 a week pocket money, it’s totally essential to buy from Primark and Peacocks. Kids in sweatshops? Sad, yeah, but... Also seen in: Abercrombie & Fitch (but only to stare at the boys) Poster girl: Pixie Geldof

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