Marks & Spencer is giving staff their second pay rise this year as part of a £15m cost-of-living support package, which also will see it hand out free food and sanitary products.
The food and clothing chain will now pay more than 40,000 workers a base pay of £10.20 an hour, compared to £9.50 at the start of the year and £10 from April.
As part of the latest package, M&S will also expand its free food policy to not just cover store staff, but also to those working at its distribution centre in Castle Donington.
From this month, it has also been offering workers free sanitary products.
Stuart Machin, M&S chief executive, said: “Whether you’re running a home or running a business, everyone across the country is feeling the pressure of rising costs. We want to do what we can to help ease some of that strain.”
He said M&S wanted to make sure staff were “fully supported and rewarded”.
M&S has unveiled the plans for the pay increases amid growing pressure on employers to help staff cope with cost-of-living pressures, which have resulted in a string of strike actions across the economy.
Workers across the economy face what could be one of their toughest ever winters, even as the Government intervenes to help cap spiralling energy costs.
Food bills are rising rapidly even as heating costs are capped. Grocery inflation hit 12.4pc last month, which market research company Kantar said was a new record.
Most major supermarkets have pushed up wages for their lowest earners in the last 12 months, with some such as Aldi joining M&S in announcing two increases in a year.
Earlier this month, M&S came under fire from trade union GMB over claims surrounding pay for its cleaners. The GMB accused M&S of telling its contractor to cut cleaners' pay at one of its distribution centres.
The contractor later responded by saying an administrative error had led to the higher wages, which had then been resolved, and said M&S had not been involved in the dispute.
M&S did not immediately respond to requests for comment.