John Lewis' director of communications Peter Cross suspended

Peter Cross, the director of communications at John Lewis, has been suspended from his post, PRWeek understands.

Peter Cross: Joined John Lewis in summer 2013
Peter Cross: Joined John Lewis in summer 2013

Cross was contacted by PRWeek but declined to comment on the development, adding that it was an "extremely private matter".

It is not yet clear why Cross was suspended or for how long.

However, in a statement agreed by Cross and John Lewis, the company said: "Peter Cross is unavoidably away from the business for personal reasons. We are expecting him to return shortly."

Cross was appointed by the retailer in January 2013 and took up his post six months later. He was previously managing director of PR agency Portas, formerly known as Yellowdoor.

He succeeded Helen Dickinson, who had been John Lewis' director of communications since 2000.

Commenting at the time of Cross' appointment, John Lewis' managing director Andy Street said Cross had inherited a highly effective comms team developed under Dickinson’s leadership and that he brought with him a "broad understanding of the UK consumer and the revolution under way on the British high street".

UPDATE 28 JULY: John Lewis comms chief Peter Cross to return to work following investigation

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