Waitrose to close four stores
Waitrose is to close three shops in Caldicot, Ipswich and Shrewsbury and sell its Wolverhampton supermarket to Tesco.
The move forms part of the retailer’s review of its store estate which began in 2017.
In a statement, Waitrose said it had been unable to find a way to make the stores profitable due to “challenging” trading.
Employing a total of 124 people, the Caldicot, Ipswich and Shrewsbury shops will cease trading on 6 December. Although staff are now facing possible redundancy, Waitrose said it will try to find alternative roles for those wishing to stay with the business. Opportunities could include transferring to local Waitrose shops or working for the John Lewis or Waitrose online businesses.
Meanwhile, the Wolverhampton shop will close on 31 December and its 140 staff will then transfer under TUPE to Tesco.
Bérangère Michel, executive director for customer service for the John Lewis Partnership, said: “Closing any of our shops is always a last resort and is not a reflection on the dedication of our partners in Caldicot, Ipswich Corn Exchange, Shrewsbury and Wolverhampton. Sadly, we have not been able to find a way to make these shops profitable in the long-term, despite the hard work of everyone involved.
“Our priority now is the wellbeing and future of our partners in these shops. We will do everything we can to support them and explore opportunities wherever possible for those who may wish to remain with the partnership.”
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