John Lewis today said department store sales jumped 20% last week as World Cup fever encouraged more customers to splash out on new flat-screen TVs.
The electricals and technology department was the busiest of the group's three divisions during the week to last Saturday, with sales up 27% on a year ago.
All but one of its 28 department stores saw overall sales growth, with Aberdeen the only outlet to miss out. Knight & Lee in Southsea topped the list with a 35% rise, while Leicester, Trafford and Bluewater gained more than 30%.
The fashion and home departments posted growth of 19% and 18% respectively, with World Cup stock selling well in sports and childrenswear.
At Waitrose, the grocery arm of the John Lewis Partnership, sales were 6.1% higher as the warm weather over the half term increased sales of picnic and barbecue fare.
Fruit sales were up by nearly a third, driven by sales of lemons as customers made the lemon tart recipe promoted by chef Heston Blumenthal in the supermarket's latest advertising campaign.