Sales fever hits city streets

Frenzy: Early crowds pack the streets of Preston as the sales get underway
Frenzy: Early crowds pack the streets of Preston as the sales get underway
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Sales fever hit the streets of Preston as the Boxing Day sales began.

Shoppers queued for bargains as sales started as early as 6am with stores such as Next, River Island and Debenhams offering 50 per cent off items.

Out-of-town retail centres such as Deepdale Retail Park and the Capitol Centre in Walton-le-Dale saw winding queues of traffic as bargain hunters battled to get in early.

Some shoppers preferred shopping in Preston city centre - saying it was quieter and easier to park.

Pippa McPhillips, 28, from St Annes, ditched the retail parks after seeing the queues and decided to come into the main shopping centre instead.

The mum-of-one said: “I have come for the kids clothes.

“I got up at about 5.45am to come here. When I got here we went straight to Next and it was full, but a couple of hours later and it’s empty.

“I got a load of stuff, queued up to pay, and then as I was walking out I saw some more and had to queue up again.

“The sales were really good. We got a lot of bargains.”

Her friend Lea Cottne, 23, from Ashton, said: “We must be crazy. We have spent about £350 but it means the kids will be kitted out for the next six months.”

Some forecasters predicted the sales might not be as busy this year, with many retailers starting sales early online and in store.

But for Sajeed Vally, 35, from Preston, the tradition still remains with Boxing Day the only day of the year when he goes shopping for clothes.

He said: “I have been buying different clothes and jumpers and things.

“I must have spent about £400. I don’t think the sales were as good this year as they have been in other years, but I am still getting some bargains.

“I do this every year. I didn’t sleep last night and got here really early.”

Jacky Howcutt, 40, from Leyland, said: “I have spent about £145, mainly on work clothes. I can’t stand paying full price for them.

“I got here at 5.15am and drove past the Capitol Centre on the way. The queues were around the corner. It was mad.”