British brand Laura Ashley is set to make a comeback on the UK high street thanks to a new partnership with retail giant Next. As part of the surprise deal, Next will bring back Laura Ashley’s homeware products and prints, offering them in its UK stores and online from next spring. Standalone Laura Ashley stores will also be opened, with a flagship store planned for the Westfield shopping centre in West London.

This exciting collaboration comes after Laura Ashley faced financial difficulties earlier this year due to the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic. The brand went into administration, resulting in the closure of all 70 of its stores. However, investment firm Gordon Brothers stepped in to acquire Laura Ashley, including its global brand, archives, and intellectual property.

While the news of Laura Ashley’s return will be welcomed by fans, it is worth noting that the fashion offerings will not be part of the deal with Next. Instead, the focus will be on reviving the brand’s homeware and print offerings, which have long been beloved by customers.

Next’s CEO, Lord Wolfson, is optimistic about the potential of this partnership. He believes that combining Laura Ashley’s design vision with Next’s online and retail infrastructure can breathe new life into the brand. The collaboration is seen as a significant boost for the heritage brand, and a British team of Laura Ashley designers will continue to represent the brand.

Head of brand and partnerships at Laura Ashley, Poppy Marshall-Lawton, expressed excitement about the opportunity to reinvigorate the brand. She noted that Laura Ashley herself was always inspired by the past but excited about the future.

This deal is just one example of Next’s ambitious plans to expand its retail operations. In addition to partnering with Laura Ashley, Next recently acquired the Victoria’s Secret business in the UK and launched its premium beauty chain. These strategic moves aim to solidify Next’s position as a major player in the UK retail market.

To learn more about Laura Ashley’s partnership with Next, you can visit Next’s official website here. Additionally, you can explore Laura Ashley’s products and offerings by visiting their official website here.