Amid declining European PC sales, Apple has seen 22 percent growth in the UK PC market over the last year, according to Gartner.

The market research firm painted a gloomy picture for the overall PC market in Europe, though. "The inventory build-up that slowed growth in the last four quarters was mostly cleared during the third quarter of 2011; however, the PC industry continued to perform below normal seasonality," said Meike Escherich, principal analyst at Gartner.

"The results in the third quarter of 2011 make unpleasant reading for the PC industry, as the third quarter is traditionally a strong consumer quarter, driven by back-to-school sales," Escherich continued.

But while traditional powerhouses of the PC market HP, Dell and Acer floundered, Apple's sales grew in the third quarter of 2011, up 19.6 percent on Q3 2010. Apple shifted 1.13 million units in the quarter, giving it a 7.6 percent share of the PC market, up from the 947,000 sales and 5.7 percent share it had in Q3 2010.

In the UK, Gartner also noted that Apple was one of the few vendors, along with Samsung, making ground on its rivals. Apple's UK market share grew to 7.8 percent, with 230,000 sales, up from 189,000 sales and a 5.7 share in Q3 2010.

"The market seems to be moving at three speeds," said Ranjit Atwal, research director at Gartner.

"The top two vendors, HP and Dell, continued to struggle to find new opportunities and experienced single-digit declines; Acer, in the process of inventory re-adjustment, declined more than 50 percent; Apple and Samsung gained strength in the market. More importantly, quarter-on-quarter, all vendors saw growth apart from Acer, suggesting the fluctuations in the market may be bottoming out."

Apple's impressive 21.8 percent growth in the UK, though, was put in the shade by Samsung, which posted growth of 39 percent. Samsung now boasts a 7.3 percent market share after shifting 217,000 units in the last quarter.

Gartner's figures don't include tablet sales. Earlier this month rival analyst house Canalys reported that global PC sales were up 18 percent, driven largely by sales of Apple's iPad.