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Shop Direct brings manufacturing home

Home shopping giant Shop Direct has added further weight to Drapers’ Save Our Skills (SOS) campaign with the revelation that it is now producing some garments in the UK.

Due to spiralling costs in the Far East the company behind the Very and Littlewoods home shopping brands is now producing some dresses, skirts and jumpsuits in Leicester instead of in a factory in Shanghai.

Chief executive Mark Newton-Jones said: “It’s very tiny at the minute, a small part of what we sell. But we want to be prepared. We see it building and becoming something bigger.”

Shop Direct is the latest in a line of retailers which have upped their UK production capacity echoing calls from Drapers, backed by a raft of industry heavyweights, to sustain and grow the UK manufacturing industry.

Marks & Spencer has increased its production of hosiery in Derbyshire and footwear giant Clarks is assessing whether it can bring some manufacturing back to the UK.

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