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Fortnum & Mason blacks out windows and stops clock as retail pays respect to Queen


Fortnum & Mason
Fortnum & Mason has blacked its windows and stopped its famous clock following the Queen’s death
// Fortnum & Mason has blacked out the windows and stopped the clock at its Piccadilly store
// Retailers including Selfridges and Liberty closed their doors today

Fortnum & Mason, the department store that holds a royal warrant from the Queen, has blacked out the windows and stopped its famous façade clock at its Piccadilly store to mark her death.

The retailer, understood to be one of the Queen’s favourite stores, has lowered its flag to half-mast and has begun issuing customer-facing teams with black armbands to wear as “a sign of its deep respect”.

A Fortnum & Mason spokesperson told Retail Gazette: “These will be worn, in line with royal protocol, until the end of the day of Her Majesty The Queen’s funeral.”

Retail paid its respects with both London’s Selfridges and Liberty stores closing on Friday.

Meanwhile, as crowds flock to lay flowers at Buckingham Palace, John Lewis confirmed that proceeds of flowers sold at its London stores would be given to charity.

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Retail leaders shared their condolences. Sainsbury’s chief executive Simon Roberts said: “We are very sorry to learn of the passing of Queen Elizabeth II.”

“She was a truly remarkable woman and an inspiration to so many people, all over the world. Some of our colleagues had the honour of hosting her at our Sainsbury’s 150th birthday celebrations and we were so grateful to her for the time she took to celebrate with us.”

“We thank her for her extraordinary decades of service to our country and our thoughts and deepest condolences are with Her Majesty’s family at this sad time.”

M&S chief executive Stuart Machin tweeted: “One of the saddest days. Our nation’s strength and stay. Our rock.”

Theo Paphitis, who owns Ryman, Robert Dyas and Boux Avenue, tweeted: “Incredibly sad to hear of the passing of the Queen, one of the few constants in most of our lives, and an unparalleled dedication to duty. An inspiration to us all. May she Rest In Peace.”

He shared that her image had “shone brightly in my private office for many years and will continue to do so”.

As the nation enters a period of mourning, retailers were unclear what the protocol was in terms of store closures, including on the day of the Queen’s funeral

One retailer told Retail Gazette: “We’re not taking any decisions until early next week, We’re waiting for the full timetable of the coming days to be published.”

However, it is thought that many retailers will opt to close on the day of the Queen’s funeral.

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