Selfridges and Liberty are closing today as Burberry draws the London Fashion Week Show

Department stores Selfridges and Liberty are the largest UK retailers to close their doors today as businesses pay tribute to the Queen’s passing.

Meanwhile, Burberry announced that the planned London Fashion Week show would no longer go ahead as a “mark of respect” for the Queen.

London was gearing up to host its biggest Fashion Week in nearly three years, scheduled to run from Thursday, September 15-19. The British Fashion Council said London Fashion Week will still go ahead, but will be limited.

Liberty London will not reopen its shop in London’s West End until Saturday morning and said: “Our deepest condolences and thoughts are with the Royal Family at this sad time. As a sign of respect, Liberty Store will be closed until Saturday, September 10 at 10 a.m. as we join the country in mourning.”

Selfridges shops in London, Birmingham and Manchester will remain closed all day after closing early yesterday after the Queen’s death was announced. They will open again on Saturday 10 September with the usual opening hours.

The department store chain said: “Queen Elizabeth has been a comforting constant throughout our lives, ascending the throne on February 6, 1952, making her the longest reigning monarch in British history.

“Over the past 70 years, Her Majesty has been committed to the service of our country and the Commonwealth and has shown tremendous devotion to duty and dedication. Our thoughts are very much with the Royal Family at this time as the country comes together to pay tribute and remember Queen Elizabeth II.”

The statement added: “Please note, our stores will close early tonight, September 8th at 8pm. Our stores will remain closed all day on Friday 9 September and will reopen on Saturday 10 September with our usual opening hours.”

UK Retail Groups Mourn Queen

The announcement came as some of Britain’s biggest retail groups, including Marks & Spencer and Knightsbridge department store Harrods, paid tribute following the death of the 96-year-old monarch.

Marks & Spencer said: “We are deeply saddened to hear of the passing of Her Majesty The Queen. She has been leading with quiet determination and selfless dedication for over 70 years.

“We join the royal family and the nation in their grief and offer the royal family our sincere condolences.”

M&S chief executive Stuart Machin described the Queen as “the strength and abode of our nation. Our rock.”

Partner retailers John Lewis and Waitrose both tweeted: “We are deeply saddened by the passing of Her Majesty The Queen. She has faithfully served the nation as our sovereign during her long, happy and glorious reign. We extend our sincere condolences to the Royal Family.”

Tesco, the UK’s largest retailer, said: “We are deeply saddened by the passing of Her Majesty The Queen. Our thoughts and condolences are with the Royal Family as we mourn the loss of our longest serving British monarch. We are deeply indebted to her devoted service to this country.”

They were among a large number of retailers to make a similar statement, with the trade association telling the British Retail Consortium: “Retailers join the world in mourning the passing of Her Majesty The Queen. We extend our deepest condolences to the Royal Family. Her loss will be felt across the country and she will be greatly missed.”

Retail adheres to Royal Protocol

Official government guidelines state: “There is no obligation for organizations to suspend business during the national mourning period [now entered for ten days].

“Depending on the nature and location of their business and the tone of the events planned, some companies may consider closing or postponing events, especially on state funeral day, but this is at the discretion of individual companies.”

The date of the Queen’s funeral has yet to be confirmed, but it will likely be on or around September 19 and could be declared a public holiday. It is widely expected that many more retailers will decide to close on that day, as a mark of respect for the UK’s longest serving monarch.