The BRC says retail recovery across the UK remains at risk from coronavirus restrictions.
It comes in response to the latest ONS Retail Sales Index figures, which showed a 5.8% increase in overall sales
Reflecting on the results, Helen Dickinson, chief exec at the British Retail Consortium, said: “The retail recovery remains fragile as the industry enters the all-important Christmas period, with November and December typically accounting for over a fifth of annual sales.
“While food and online retail continued to show strong growth, high street shopping has struggled in recent months, with footfall still down by over a third. Tighter Government restrictions have taken their toll on fashion and beauty sales, while home office and computing equipment has benefitted.”
Adding: “Retailers have spent hundreds of millions to make stores Covid-secure and keep staff and customers safe. Furthermore, they are encouraging the public to shop early for Christmas and prevent the last minute rush, so that everyone – from shoppers to warehouse workers – have the space they need to stay safe and well.
“Retail has proven itself to be a responsible industry during this pandemic, and Government should not risk the retail recovery by closing stores during the all-important run up to Christmas.”