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Summer sun boosts retails sales

A blast of summer sun at the end of last month triggered a surge in food and clothing sales after weeks of heavy rainfall, a major trade association said today.

Retail sales by value were up 1.3% on a like-for-like basis in May, following a sharp 3.3% decline in the previous month, the British Retail Consortium (BRC) said.

The BRC, which represents 60% of retailers, said miserable weather at the start of May led to pent up demand and then as the weather improved shoppers hit the high streets.