Budget clothing retailer The Peacock Group Plc said on Friday that first quarter like-for-like sales were up 2.8 per cent in the 13 weeks to 2 July 2005.   

Total sales in the same period were up 10.2 per cent, while comparable gross profit was up 5.7 per cent.

Chief executive Richard Kirk said that even though the overall retail sector is depressed, the "clothing sector had a boost in the last weeks from summer finally arriving."

Peacocks said its performance continues to be driven by an increasing fashion focus and its store refurbishment programme.

86 per cent of Peacocks stores now operate in the new format. A similar refurbishment is to go ahead at its Bonmarche stores, which sell clothing aimed at women over 45.