Shoppers arrive early for Boxing Day sales in Norwich

Shoppers out in force in Norwich for the Boxing Day sales. Picture: DENISE BRADLEY

Shoppers out in force in Norwich for the Boxing Day sales. Picture: DENISE BRADLEY - Credit: Copyright: Archant 2014

Hundreds of people in Norwich braved the cold weather to grab a bargain in the Boxing Day sales – with some eager shoppers apparently queueing from about 1am.

Many city stores opened early for bargain hunters with Next in Hay Hill welcoming shoppers at 6am, and staying open until 6pm.

Debenhams, in Orford Place, welcomed shoppers from 7am with Marks and Spencer, in Rampant Horse Street, Top Shop, Primark and The White Company, all in Gentleman's Walk, also opening early.

The earliest shoppers apparently arrived at Next in Hay Hill at about 1am – five hours before the store was due to open.

The store put up barriers and a security guard was on duty at the entrance to the shop.

Shopper Samantha Dorken, from Hellesdon, said she was prepared to get up early to grab a bargain.

She said: 'I left home at 4.15am. I have been thinking about the sales all over Christmas.

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'I've been to Next at Home at Longwater in Costessey, Next in Hay Hill, and Next at Riverside in Norwich.

'It's worth it just for the sales. You get more bargains if you get here early.'

Julia Gregory, from Thorpe End, was shopping with her daughter, Sacha Downs, from Sprowston.

She said: 'I got here at 5am. I was looking to buy some homeware.'

Jarda Reznicek and Mark Skipper, both from Thorpe Marriott, arrived at about 7.30am, and also headed to Next in Hay Hill.

Mr Skipper said: 'I come here every year to stock up with clothes –it saves in the long run.'

Mr Reznicek was also looking for clothing bargains, although he said: 'It's not as busy as normal.'

Chapelfield opened at 8am and remained open until 6pm, while the stores in Castle Mall were open from 10am to 6pm.

However, some big names were not open yesterday, with sales at Jarrold's, in London Street, and John Lewis, in All Saints Green, starting today.

Across the country, retailers opened their doors to huge crowds waiting to get in and make the most of slashed prices, with Next and Marks and Spencer both offering 50pc discounts on items.

The rush to splash the cash came after a record £636m was spent online on Christmas Day.

Did you bag an extra-special bargain in the sales? Let us know. Email