Department store Debenhams is selling 5XL clothes for our expanding waistlines

Debenhams is offering clothes in sizes of up to 5XL.

Debenhams is offering clothes in sizes of up to 5XL.

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A high street retailer has started stocking clothes to suit Britain's expanding waistline - with sizes going up to XXXXXL.

Debenhams, which has stores in Sunderland, South Shields, Newcastle, the MetroCentre and Stockton, say they have begun stocking the 5XL size in male ranges to meet the rising need for larger clothes around the country, after being inundated with requests for bigger items.

The new big and tall range with clothes in 5XL have up to a 64in chest and a 20in collar.

Previously their stock stopped at 3XL, but demand for larger sizes of shirts, suits, tops, casual jackets and trousers has soared by 170 per cent in the last two years.

A spokesman for the retailer said one in nine of all menswear purchases in its stores nationally are now larger than size 2XL, which is 50-52in chest and 18in collar.

Retail analyst Columino said last year the UK spent £2.1 billion on XL garments, a rise of £200million from four years ago, and predicts an increase by another £200million in the next 24 months.