Lightweight fabrics, understated hues and classic silhouettes that effortlessly elevate any outfit: trench coats are the spring staple that will never go out of style. But not only do they cut a stylish silhouette, these icons are steeped in sartorial history too. Dating back to World War I, they were first used as an alternative to heavy and restrictive overcoats thanks to Thomas Burberry, who is often credited with creating the modern trench coat (although Aquascutum also claims to have developed a similar style around the same time).

As is the tendency with all classics, the intervening century has spawned a myriad of excellent dupes – and these high street ones are this season’s best on a budget. From versatile neutrals to relaxed denims, discover the perfect trench to transition seamlessly from chilly mornings to balmy afternoons in style.

By Nancy Alsop
March 2024