Clothing and home furnishings retailer Laura Ashley Holdings has reported an 11.6 per cent drop in UK sales for the 24 weeks ended 15 January 2005.

In a trading update, the company also said that profit before tax for the full financial year was on target to fall within the range of brokers' forecasts.

For the 50 weeks ended 15 January 2005, total UK sales dropped 10.1 per cent, with clothing sales plummeting 31.2 per cent.

Laura Ashley, once a stalwart of the UK high street, has seen sales flounder over recent years, especially within its clothing division.