The FTSE 100 saw minor gains drift away at the end of the day to end a shade off one per cent down.
The index closed down 0.98 per cent to 5426.30 dropping as the markets opened and fell in New York.
Marks & Spencer fell 24.53 per cent on the day after poor trading results to 240p.
Miners Eurasian and Antofagasta fell 9.36 per cent and 7.94 per cent, while Next dropped 7.92 per cent.
Builders' supplier Wolseley dropped 8.95 per cent as gloom showered the construction sector.
The FTSE 250 fell 2.94 per cent as the full effect of the fall of the builders bit.
Taylor Wimpey dropped 41.67 per cent after it announced job cuts, Barratt Developments was down 29.07 per cent and Persimmon fell 17.67 per cent.
However, there were some gains to be had in the FTSE 100.
Pharma giants AstraZeneca and GlaxoSmithKline now judged to be a safe pair - were up 4.84 per cent and 3.90 per cent.
Vodafone rose 3.53 per cent, Severn Trent rose 2.91 per cent and Old Mutual was up 2.6 per cent.
Ryan Kneale, market analyst at BetsForTraders.com, said, "Drug makers are traditionally seen as a safe haven when the markets are in a period of disarray as they are now.
"Today's news that AstraZeneca won a key US patent battle has buoyed their share price to the tune of five per cent and it has had a knock-on effect throughout the sector boosting the share price of their rivals too.
"Our clients are feeling much more positive today with just over 80 per cent of all bets on AstraZeneca and fellow drug maker GlaxoSmithKline, placed today, betting that their respective share price will rise over the next two weeks."