Retailers are hoping to cash in on further price cuts this weekend after the frenzy of Black Friday saw shoppers scrambling to bag pre-Christmas bargains.

Retailers Hope Black Friday

Supermarket Asda, which saw over two million people visit its stores on Friday, is among the retailers extending a number of offers on products today.

Online retailers are also preparing their systems for similar success on Cyber Monday, another sales event originating in the US and adopted by the UK.

More than £1bn was spent on Friday as thousands of shoppers descended on high street shops and websites.

But the huge price cuts saw fights break out in the aisles of some supermarkets as people raced to grab the best bargains.

Eyewitnesses described how bargain-hunters behaved “like animals” and likened scenes to a “war zone”.

Websites, including Tesco Direct, Currys, Argos and GAME, also crashed under the strain of online shoppers as sales began at midnight.

One of Britain’s most senior police officers criticised retailers for their handling of the crowds which threatened to cause crushes and urged retailers to work with police in further sales events.

At least three people were arrested and a woman was hurt after being hit by a falling television, while some outlets were forced to shut to restore order.

Sir Peter Fahy, chief constable of Greater Manchester Police, whose force appealed to shoppers to keep calm, said the events were predictable and he was disappointed stores did not have enough security staff.

“The events of last night were totally predictable and I am disappointed that stores did not have sufficient security staff on duty.

“This created situations where we had to deal with crushing, disorder and disputes between customers.”

After the Met Police was called to three Tesco branches in London following reports of large crowds in Edmonton, Willesden and Surrey Quays, Sergeant Paul Marshall wrote on Twitter: “Even on Black Friday shoving people to the floor so you can get £20 off a coffee maker is still an assault.”

South Wales Police also reported receiving a number of calls from staff at Tesco stores after the force became “concerned due to the volume of people who had turned up to sale events”.

There were also disturbances at a Tesco in Glasgow which had to close for a period as people clashed over discounted goods.

Black Friday was introduced in America on the day after Thanksgiving and is thought to have been given its name because brisk business was said to have helped retailers back into profit – into the black.

The event was introduced to the UK by Amazon in 2010, with Asda joining the craze in 2013.

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