UK retail sales rose by 3.9% last month, representing the fastest July growth since 2006.
The BRC-KPMG retail sales monitor found that food and drink performed particularly well on the back of warm weather and British sporting success. In real terms, total growth was 4.4%, the fastest since April 2011.
“This is a very solid sales performance, the second best month this year and better than we’ve seen in any July since 2006,” said Helen Dickinson, director general, British Retail Consortium.
“It has been driven by the warm weather and retailers working hard to offer deep discounts and great offers to their customers, with the reduction in shop prices we reported for July translating into more generous spending in UK stores.
“Food has performed very strongly, with summer barbecue ingredients and feel-good foods doing well during a month where the Lions, Murray, Chris Froome in the Tour de France and the start of the Ashes series all contributed to the positive summer feeling.”
Convenience store retailers reported record sales in last month’s heatwave. Saki Ghafoor reported a 15% weekly uplift at his Nisa store in Ashington, Northumberland, while Dan Cock, owner of Whitstone Village Stores in Cornwall, recorded 50% growth in one July week as holiday-makers flocked to his shop.