The UK high street gets an early Christmas present as high street sales get a boost for the first time since January

Helen Cahill
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The Best Of London Stores Christmas Window Displays - 2014
Christmas is the most important time of year for retailers (Source: Getty)

Is the high street back on track?

High street sales are back in positive territory after falling for the past nine months.

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According to data from accountants BDO, sales on the high street grew 0.7 per cent year-on-year in October.

Homeware performed particularly strongly, with sales growing by 11.6 per cent annually. The sales of lifestyle goods grew 2.3 per cent.

Fashion retailers continued to struggle, however, with sales down by 0.9 per cent. However, this was the best month for fashion since January, BDO said.

Sophie Michael, head of retail and wholesale at BDO, said: "Shoppers have reminded everyone of their resilience and this result provides a promising start to a crucial trading quarter.

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"Prices will inevitably rise next year in the context of the falling pound, but right now people are remarkably upbeat about their finances."

She said that retailers now have the chance to push goods at full prices, before inevitably cutting prices on Black Friday.

The next quarter will be crucial for the retail sector as shoppers stock up on Christmas gifts.

The New West End Company has estimated that the West End - which kicks off the festive season when the Oxford Street Christmas lights turn on this Sunday - will rake in £2.3bn over the period.

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