Norwich’s John Lewis store to open earlier on Thursdays following successful Christmas trial run

Norwich's John Lewis store is to open its doors 30 minutes earlier on Thursdays in response to customer demand ending more than three decades of tradition.

The store had opted for a 9am opening time in the run up to Christmas, in line with other weekdays, but from this week the move will become permanent.

Richard Marks, managing director of John Lewis Norwich, said: 'We have opened at 9.30am on Thursdays for over 30 years but we recognise that some customers wish to shop earlier and that we need to adapt to suit their needs. From this Thursday, we will open at 9am every Thursday and we do hope our customers enjoy this more flexible approach.'

The news comes as House of Fraser, which has a store in Norwich's Chapelfied shopping centre, reported its 'best ever' Christmas performance yesterday.

The department store said sales were up 6.3pc in the six weeks to January 5, with online revenues up 48pc in the period as increasing numbers of customers used their mobile phones and tablets to shop on the internet.

The group, which has 60 department stores, said it sold 45,000 pairs of shoes and 40,000 handbags a week in the period, up 19pc and 16pc respectively.

Menswear performed particularly strongly in the period, up 7.4pc overall and 8.6pc in its own brand range.