THE UK high street has had its best September for five years as shoppers proved they are willing to spend in the build-up to the Christmas season.

Overall like-for-like sales increased by 2.9 per cent last month, the best growth for any single month since April 2014, according to accountancy and advisory firm BDO’s High Street Sales Tracker.

Some department stores reported that consumers are already shopping for early Christmas presents, boosting the lifestyle and gifting sectors.

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Despite reports of low footfall, BDO’s figures showed sales of lifestyle goods were up 3.6 per cent and well-received Autumn fashion lines helped improve clothing sales by 2.7 per cent.

Non-store sales also leapt by 30.4 per cent year-on-year – the biggest increase since January 2015 – with retailers again citing early Christmas shopping as a factor. The positive September figures follow the high street enjoying its best August in almost two years.