London Fashion Week goes fur-free for the first time

London Fashion Week showcases the best in British and international design and the likes of Victoria Beckham and Burberry are expected to be highlights of the first fur-free LFW.

Thousands of people made up of buyers, designers and models from 50 countries are descending on the capital for five days of catwalk shows and presentations beginning on Friday.

Mother of Pearl creative Amy Powney told ITV News that tackling fur might just be the beginning of reform in the fashion industry.

"What David Attenborough just done to plastics by putting it on Blue Planet has finally opened up that conversation so I think the back ends of things are being blown off because of that sort of element of social media," she said.

"I think we are at the very beginning of a conversation in something that I hope we do make massive change in because there are huge issues in the industry - not just fur."

Models on the catwalk during the Richard Quinn Autumn/Winter 2018 London Fashion Week show. Credit: PA

Victoria Beckham will join the London Fashion Week schedule for the first time on September 16 for a 10th anniversary show celebrating a decade in the business.

Various designers from across the globe will be showcasing their work notably: Jenny Packham, Alexa Chung and Julien MacDonald.

Jenny Packham, a longstanding favourite of the Duchess of Cambridge but red carpets the world over are graced with her gowns worn by stars including Taylor Swift, Uma Thurman, Angelina Jolie, Emily Blunt and Kate Winslet.

Packham returns to London to celebrate her brand’s 30th anniversary.

The Duchess of Cambridge, wearing a dress by British designer Jenny Packham and walks with National Portrait Gallery director Sandy Nairne. Credit: PA

The television presenter and model turned designer Alexa Chung will hold her first ever London Fashion Week show on September 15 after debuting her eponymous label last season.

Chung has spoken of her concerns about the impact of Brexit on the UK's fashion industry.

She said she was worried about the limits of freedom of movement for creative workers as a result of EU withdrawal.

Alexa Chung attending the Serpentine Summer Party 2018. Credit: PA

Burberry’s new artistic director Riccardo Tisci will present his much-anticipated first collection for the British fashion house on September 17.

The fashion house had already announced it would stop using real fur in its collections, joining brands including Gucci, which dropped fur from its collections last year.

A campaign calling for the event to drop fur had been launched by activist group Peta UK and British singer Paloma Faith the week before the announcement.

For the first time, none of the designers will use fur at the event.

The British Fashion Council (BFC) made the announcement after asking all 80 designers featured in the programme whether they will be showing real fur.

It said: "The BFC survey results reflect a cultural change based on ideals and choices made by designer businesses, international brands as well as consumer sentiment."

The decisions were "also encouraged by the stance of multi-brand stores who are moving away from selling fur", the statement added

However, the BFC has not itself imposed a ban on fur being used, and insists it will support choices made by brands at the biannual event.

The 68th London Fashion Week comes as the industry contributed £32.3 billion to the UK economy in 2017 – a 5.4% increase on 2016.

Fashion remains a major UK employer with 890,000 jobs across the industry, up 1.8% on 2016.