Britain's retailers may be among the most talented in the world when it comes to running stores - but how about on stage?

The first ever Retail Trust Search For a Star campaign - a Britain's Got Talent for the retail industry - was launched this week. It is open to staff at retailers of all sizes, from independent corner shops to Tesco.

"We want to give the sector something to celebrate and enjoy," said Retail Trust CEO Nigel Rothband. "It will be a great opportunity to let everyone in retail know we are there when they need us, with advice and hardship grants."

Wannabe stars are invited to send videos of themselves to the Retail Trust, which will choose 150 acts to perform at Auditions Roadshows held at shopping centres in London and Manchester.

A panel of judges made up of senior industry figures and celebrities will then whittle 150 acts down to 50.

The public will have the chance to view and vote for their favourite acts online and the most popular four will take part in a glittering grand finale on 25 January at the Retail Trust London Ball at Grosvenor House, where the overall winner will be announced.

"Search For A Star gives retail staff a chance to shine and have their moment in the limelight," said Sir Stuart Rose, executive chair of Marks & Spencer. "M&S will definitely be taking the opportunity to show off our talents."

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