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John Lewis' gender neutral children's clothing is welcomed by campaigners

The move towards gender neutrality has been welcomed by campaigners

John Lewis is the first high-street retailer to launch gender neutral clothing - ditching separate "boys" and "girls" shopping areas.

The retail giant has done away with labels in children’s clothing in a bid to stop reinforcing "gender stereotypes".

The new range of gender-neutral clothes from the department store, which is one of the most famous and popular brands in the UK, has been welcomed by campaigners, according to Manchester Evening News .

John Lewis own-brand children clothing will now say “Girls & Boys” or “Boys & Girls”(Image: PA)

Caroline Bettis, the head of childrenswear at John Lewis said: ‘We do not want to reinforce gender stereotypes within our John Lewis collections and instead want to provide greater choice and variety to our customers, so that the parent or child can choose what they would like to wear."

The move has been welcomed by campaigners after a number of high street brands were embroiled in sexism rows over their clothing ranges.

Gap, for instance, was criticised after selling a range of clothing that referred to girls as 'social butterflies' and boys as 'little scholars'.

According to reports, John Lewis own-brand children clothing will now say “Girls & Boys” or “Boys & Girls.”

As well as the old range of clothing no longer being labelled by gender a new set of items designed to be worn by both boys and girls will also be rolled out.

The range includes trousers and dresses with dinosaur, safari and spacecraft print designs.

Girls' clothing is often stereotyped to be pink, with boys wearing blue(Image: Getty Images/iStockphoto)

Campaign group Let Clothes Be Clothes praised the move, saying: “We believe John Lewis is the first high street retailer to remove its gender signs and labels.

“It’s fantastic news and we hope other shops and online retailers will now move in the same direction.

"A T-shirt should be just a T-shirt – not a T-shirt just for girls or just for boys.

“Higher-end, independent clothing retailers have been more pro-active at creating gender-neutral collections, but we hope unisex ranges will filter down to all price points.

"We still see many of the supermarkets, for example, using stereotypical slogans on their clothing.”

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