Stores slash prices to woo shoppers

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Retailers are hoping brisk business will repair damage done by the recent cold snap

Retailers are hoping for a Boxing Day bonanza as prices are slashed in a bid to entice shoppers into Britain’s stores.

High streets and malls across the country are offering heavy discounts to make up for the dent to sales caused by plummeting pre-Christmas temperatures and heavy snow.

Consumers are also expected to snap up bargains before the VAT increase from 17.5% to 20% on January 4.

The fact that Boxing Day falls on a Sunday means trading hours are restricted to six hours.

Shoppers coming into London will have to contend with the Tube strike which threatens to affect travel across the capital.

Many people are also expected to browse for items from the comfort of their own home to avoid the freezing conditions.

Comparison website moneysupermarket.com predicted this year’s Boxing Day sales could be the biggest ever, saying the UK is set to spend £323 million online in a single day.

Selfridges is expecting 80,000 people to pass through the doors of its Oxford Street store, with discounts of up to 75%.

A spokeswoman said: “Despite the fact we are opening at 11am due to Sunday trading, the first three shoppers started queuing at 11pm last night and by 4am there were 60 people waiting.

“We expect bags and shoes to sell really well, that’s where shoppers will flock to first.”

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