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Sunny Weather and Bank Holidays Boost UK Retail Sales In May

High street of Windsor

Retail sales saw a major rebound in May, driven by sunny weather and double bank holidays that drew shoppers to the high street. 

According to the latest Office for National Statistics (ONS) figures, sales volumes increased by 2.9 percent in May, recovering from a 1.8 percent decline in April.

Non-food stores experienced a notable rise of 3.5 percent, the largest monthly increase since April 2021. 

Retailers attributed this growth to better footfall, favourable weather, and promotional activities. 

The ONS highlighted strong sales growth in clothing and footwear retailers, furniture stores, and sports and toy shops. 

Online spending also saw a boost, increasing by 5.4 percent in May.

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This positive trend in retail sales coincides with rising consumer confidence and a return to normal inflation levels.

Matt Jeffers, Managing Director of Retail Strategy and Consulting at Accenture UK & Ireland, said: “There are signs that this growth could continue. 

“Big events this summer, including the Euros and Taylor Swift’s Eras Tour, should provide a further boost for sales as consumers prioritise spending on experiences and events.

“Retailers will have also been planning how to capitalise on these moments with new marketing and value propositions which, coupled with a more settled weather forecast, may help to boost sales in the months ahead.”

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