Primark, Aldi and M&S will be extending their opening hours in the run up to Christmas, once lockdown is over.

Non-essential shops are currently closed in England until December 2, with retailers missing out on one of the busiest times of the year for trading.

To help ensure Christmas shoppers can get everything they need for the big day, some shops have decided to open for longer than usual in the run up to December 25, reports BirminghamLive.

Primark is amongst the stores intending to give customers more time to shop. A spokeswoman for Primark, which doesn’t have a website so hasn’t been able to trade at all during lockdown, said: "Associated British Foods Plc are calling for extended trading hours for Primark stores once they re-open in December."

M&S has confirmed it is operating its “longest ever opening hours” in the run up to Christmas. Selected shops will be until midnight and yesterday the retailer confirmed its longer hours will apply on December 21, 22 and 23 at 400 of its stores, which is two-thirds of its operation in England. Those that don’t stay open until midnight will close at 10pm.

Sacha Berendji, M&S’s Retail, operations and property director said: "We want our customers to be able to shop with confidence this Christmas, which means supporting social distancing in our stores and minimal queuing outside as the weather gets colder.

"To help with this, we’ll be operating our longest ever opening hours just before Christmas.

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"Along with the wider industry, we continue to ask for Sunday trading hours to be extended to help us increase our capacity to serve everyone safely this festive season."

Meanwhile, Aldi is keeping its supermarkets open until 11pm - an hour later than usual - from December 21 to 23.

Waitrose will keep smaller stores open until 11pm from December 21 to 23, with larger branches closing at 10pm.