London's West End retailers benefit from slump in sterling
Tourists taking advantage in the fall in the value of sterling following June's Brexit vote led to a surge in sales at London's West End retailers in July.
According to new figures released by the New West End Company, which represents the interests of businesses in the area, total spend hit £400m in July - up 4.9% year on year.
Luxury retailers benefited in particular with Bond Street recording an 11.5% year-on-year increase in total spend but Oxford Street too, which houses more mainstream retailers, was up 7.3%. Department stores were up 8.7%.
New West End Company CEO Jace Tyrrell described the figures as "remarkable" in light of the tough trading that retailers elsewhere in the country - particularly in the fashion sector which dominates the West End retail line-up - had experienced, but said the positive effect may be temporary.
“Tourists looking to cash in on the weak pound have helped to alleviate, albeit on a temporary basis, some of the shock waves that hit the economy following the Brexit vote,” Tyrrell said.