IT’S almost back-to-school time and most parents are left wondering where did the last month go?
That also means it’s time to stock up on school supplies – including doing the dreaded uniform shop.
Shirts, trousers, skirts and jumpers are among the hundreds of things parents have to buy to get their little ones term-time ready.
And school uniform can prove very expensive.
A Wynsors survey of more than 1,000 UK parents revealed 76% find the cost of buying school uniform and supplies puts a strain on their household budget.
Luckily, new research by Which? has found the cheapest supermarket uniform – and it’s not Lidl or Aldi.
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It’s actually Tu Clothing at Sainsbury’s.
Experts analysed the prices of a selection of essential school uniform items for a nine-year-old at eight major supermarkets and clothing retailers.
Sainsbury’s is selling polo shirts for £4, sweatshirts for £3, boys’ trousers for £8 and girls’ trousers for £9.
A full uniform shop will set you back an average of £47.
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The experts didn’t analyse Lidl or Aldi school uniforms due to the lack of stock available – meaning you’d likely have to top up on items from other shops anyway.
Both of the budget supermarkets run an in-store £5 uniform bundle deal as ‘special buys’ but the deal tends to sell out rapidly and doesn’t get restocked.
The second cheapest supermarket was Morrisons for a full uniform stock-up coming in at £48.95.
Next was Asda at £53, Tesco at £64.50 and Matalan at £69.
Unsurprisingly, M&S, John Lewis and Next topped the analysis at £73, £85 and £102 respectively.
Parents struggling with the cost of living can get up to £300 free cash to help pay for school uniforms.
Many local councils provide families with grants to cover the cost of skirts, trousers and more.
But what you are entitled to depends on where you live, whether that be Northern Ireland, Scotland, Wales or England.
That said, help is usually offered to families on a low-income or benefits.
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The grants go by different names. For example in Scotland it's known as the school clothing grant while in England it's called the school uniform grant.
Schemes open at different times as well, so it's always worth checking with your local council whether you can apply for help.
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