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Lyle & Scott's new range

Knitwear king raids its rich, woolly history

Lyle & Scott's new range

The words ‘sports casual’ once conjured up images of a pastel-bedecked Alan Partridge, but in recent years the sartorial tide has turned. These days, old-fashioned leisurewear adorns rock stars as well as retirees and a huge part of that is down to Lyle & Scott.

Conceived in 1874 by Scottish business associates William Lyle and Walter Scott, the classic British brand with the swooping eagle logo has evolved from Seventies golf outfitter to modern high-street mainstay — but its latest range looks to the past for inspiration.

Revamped by an all-new team, Lyle & Scott Heritage plunders the brand’s past for a bumper collection of elegantly simple cold-weather pieces that yet another soggy British summer may necessitate sooner rather than later.

There’s a sharply tailored wool pea coat, a pair of professorial blazers in knitted tweed and wool flannel, and a black gilet that’s just the right side of lumberjack cool. Over-dyed shirts and a spruced-up version of the classic polo favoured by bands such as Arctic Monkeys also feature.

But it’s the knitwear that truly impresses. Featuring a new silk and wool blend, the heavy-duty knits on show include crew-neck jumpers in gratifyingly bright colours, a chunky cardigan with natty leather buttons, a preppy cricket jumper and a fitted roll-neck (above) with a maritime feel.

Each of these items is capped off by a new red version of the iconic eagle — not to be confused with the golden eagle that characterises the vintage line — and will be available online from 8 August and in stores including Selfridges, Fenwick and Brown Thomas just after.

Consider your weather-battling autumn wardrobe sorted. But whatever you do, don’t team them with a monogrammed blazer and string-backed driving gloves.