Carpetright, Britain's biggest floor covering retailer, today posted a small rise in underlying second quarter sales at its core UK business.

It said the rollout of store refurbishments and its laminate and bed ranges helped boost trading.

The group said sales at UK stores open for over a year rose by 0.6% in the 12 weeks to October 13, its fiscal second quarter, compared with a 1.7% rise in the first quarter of the year.

Total sales in the UK fell by 0.6% due to a year-on-year reduction in store numbers.

"Whilst the underlying floor coverings market remains volatile, our self-help actions such as the development of our bed proposition, extension of our laminate range to more stores and the impact of our store refurbishment programme, continue to deliver positive results," chief executive Darren Shapland said.

Like-for-like sales in its 141-store European unit - which includes Ireland, Belgium and the Netherlands - fell by 12.7%.

It had fallen by 6.3% in the previous quarter, reflecting weak consumer confidence in the Netherlands in particular.

The group, which makes around 80% of sales in the UK from 484 stores, said its expectations for the full-year remained unchanged. Carpetright is expected to deliver a pretax profit for the full-year of £10.54m sterling, analysts believe.