Newspaper article Manchester Evening News

Keep on Smiling! Another Sunny Weekend's Here ; Sales of Fans, Vests and Flip-Flops soarHot Weather to Last into Next Week

Newspaper article Manchester Evening News

Keep on Smiling! Another Sunny Weekend's Here ; Sales of Fans, Vests and Flip-Flops soarHot Weather to Last into Next Week

Article excerpt

SALES of barbecues and suncream are soaring in shops across Greater Manchester - with the sizzling weather set to continue into the weekend.

Store bosses are reporting a surge in customers picking up summer goods as they enjoy the glorious weather.

City-centre 'footfall' has increased by up to 45 per cent this month, with the sun giving the high street a boost. Shoppers have also been flocking to the Trafford Centre with John Lewis reporting that barbecue sales have more than doubled while picnic sales have climbed by a staggering 186pc.

Suncream sales have risen by a quarter, sales of portable fans and air conditioning units are up six times on last year's figures and sunglasses are up nearly 50pc at the branch.

Lucy Ramseyer, managing director of John Lewis Trafford, said: "We've seen our customers embrace the warm weather by jumping at the chance to dine outdoors."

Crowds have also been gathering at Piccadilly Gardens, Exchange Square and Spinningfields in Manchester to soak up the sun and watch live sport on the big screens.

Simon Binns, business manager at Cityco, which runs the city centre, said footfall was up by 45pc on Monday and 42pc on Tuesday.

WEEKEND FORECAST 82F 77F 82F The weekly average for the week starting July 1 was up 18pc, and 9pc up on the week starting July 8. He said: "It's been a triple hit with the weather, the Manchester International festival and sales.

"People are more inclined to get outside, use the city centre, hang around, eat and drink and sit in outdoor areas like Exchange Square. I think all the businesses would like the heatwave to continue for five years! "People are in a better mood so more inclined to treat themselves - plus flip-flop and vest sales are going through the roof.

"The economy is difficult, people are working a lot and life can be hard, but the sunshine does seem to make it a lot better. And it changes people's perspective of the city centre."

At the Trafford Centre, officials have built a sandy beach at Barton Square with sailing boasts, trampolines and a Victorian carousel. Sea Life Aquarium is also doing well, according to bosses. …

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