The "Made in Britain" slogan T-shirt... that comes from India

Peacocks says it didn't mean to mislead

Updated: 

The Union Jack flies in the wind.

Peacocks has denied misleading customers after a complaint about a T-shirt with "Made in Britain" emblazoned on the front - but which was actually made in India.

The £10 maternity T-shirt carries an image of a Union Jack, with the slogan in large letters in the middle. But after Londoner Stella Haig bought one in Dorset, she discovered that it had come from rather further afield.



"You put 'Made in Britain' on a T-shirt and people would expect it was made in Britain," she told the Daily Mail. "It's just not right to try to fool us like this to earn a few pounds."

Peacocks justifies the slogan on the basis that it's not intended to refer to the T-shirt itself. "The T-shirt is a slogan style that refers to the wearer's baby bump being made in Britain," a spokeswoman told AOL. "It was never our intention to imply the T-shirt itself is made in Britain, and it was clearly labelled to show that this was not the case."

Peacocks says it works with suppliers all over the world, although the spokeswoman was unable to say whether any of its products are in fact made in the UK.

The Make it British campaign says it frequently sees products that claim to be made in the UK when they aren't - from pottery with the word England stamped on the bottom but manufactured in Thailand to Union Jack wallets that are made in India.

"They often have a tagline such as 'Fabulously British' or 'Great British Style' when their product's provenance is nothing of the sort," says campaign founder Kate Hills. "It's what I call 'Fake it British'."

T-shirt slogans can be a minefield for retailers - although Amazon, for example, should have seen trouble coming when it started selling "Keep calm and rape a lot" T-shirts last year. And Urban Outfitters positively courts controversy, with slogans including "Depression" and "Eat Less".

Last September, Topshop was forced to fork out £1 million in damages and costs after using a picture of Rihanna without her permission.

And even the way a T-shirt is displayed can cause outrage: earlier this week, San Diego clothing company Just Add a Kid was forced to issue an apology after pairing a monkey T-shirt with a hanger carrying the face of an African-American boy.