High Street chain collapse sweepstake

Martin Phillp
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Wilko are closing the following stores, Bournemouth, Stockton, Shipley, The Fort, Scunthorpe, Narborough Road, Grantham, Redditch, Rotherham, Skegness, Sutton Coldfield, Orpington, Edmonton Green, Llanelli, Merthyr Tydfil and Cleethorpes.
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Jonwo
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While the Wilko closures aren't great news, I am assuming these are stores that are underperforming and closing them is cheaper than renegotiating rents
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tillyoshea
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Martin Phillp wrote: Mon 10 Jan, 2022 11.50 Wilko are closing the following stores, Bournemouth, Stockton, Shipley, The Fort, Scunthorpe, Narborough Road, Grantham, Redditch, Rotherham, Skegness, Sutton Coldfield, Orpington, Edmonton Green, Llanelli, Merthyr Tydfil and Cleethorpes.
The Stockton branch is in the Castlegate Centre, which is being demolished (work is already underway), so this example isn't surprising (though I suppose it could have relocated).
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WillPS
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I can believe most of these are just natural lease expirations. Anecdotally, their stores seem to do better in retail park type locations (which might explain why Rotherham is closing as it is duplicated by the nearby massive Parkgate) and less affluent settings (which could perhaps explain why Sutton Coldfield is on the list).

It'd be a shame if it becomes a longer-term trend as their stores are genuinely useful.
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Martin Phillp
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Orpington is one of three branches currently in the London Borough of Bromley which is closing. It's in the Walnuts Shopping Centre which is set to undergo regeneration. It was acquired by Tikehau Capital in 2019 and managed by Areli Real Estate who worked at regenerating Battersea Power Station, so I suspect it's another lease issue.

The other two which are staying open are Bromley, which is on the High Street in an ex Woolworths which enjoys decent footfall from shoppers and those who use Bromley South station, while the other is in a tiny shopping centre in Penge, which has largely C2DE shops such as Iceland and Card Factory, but again has decent footfall and used by the local community. Wilko is the largest tenant in The Blenheim Centre.

The other argument for closing Orpington is that Bromley is a bus or train ride away, there's also a local bus that connects with the Penge Wilko and there's another in Swanley which can be reached by car, but it's still sad for locals in Orpington who use it to get stuff from what is a useful store where the company has otherwise largely benefitted from the pandemic.
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Whataday
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Judging by the statements made by some landlords, Wilko are announcing the closures and negotiating afterwards.

I find Wilko a very useful store but I'm often frustrated at the frequency my local store (Cardiff City Centre) switches its departments around meaning it takes an eternity to find things. For instance in September things like storage containers and kitchenware move downstairs, presumably to serve the city's large student population. They also temporarily discontinue many lines to focus on these items. I understand the business thinking behind this but it's so frustrating for me and no doubt other customers that shop their all year round.

Boots also have a habit of switching things around seasonally meaning I have to walk about five lengths of the store trying to find the aisle I need.
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WillPS
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Whataday wrote: Wed 12 Jan, 2022 16.52 Judging by the statements made by some landlords, Wilko are announcing the closures and negotiating afterwards.

I find Wilko a very useful store but I'm often frustrated at the frequency my local store (Cardiff City Centre) switches its departments around meaning it takes an eternity to find things. For instance in September things like storage containers and kitchenware move downstairs, presumably to serve the city's large student population. They also temporarily discontinue many lines to focus on these items. I understand the business thinking behind this but it's so frustrating for me and no doubt other customers that shop their all year round.

Boots also have a habit of switching things around seasonally meaning I have to walk about five lengths of the store trying to find the aisle I need.
The remaining branch in Nottingham city centre is terrible for this, completely disorienting. It seems to settle a different way around each time too - it's not a huge shop, all on one floor, but it is somewhat doughnut shaped.

Neither of the branches in the borough I live in seem to do more than expand gardening at the beginning of the year then shrink it for Halloween and Christmas later on, the latter being replaced briefly by massive amounts of storage boxes and waffle fleece throws before the gardening stuff comes back again.
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thegeek
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I don't think our local Wilko is doing too badly, but the site has been identified by the council as having potential for development - ie they think that a shop with a storeroom on top is inefficient use of the land, and would be likely to approve planning permission if someone wanted to knock it down and build some retail with a few floors of flats on top. They've said the same with the nearby Matalan and B&M too.

I don't entirely disagree with them, we need more housing - it's just that these are definitely useful shops for the local community, and there's no guarantee that the businesses involved will decide to keep a branch in the area once their landlord kicks them out.
cyberdude
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The Wilko closing in Llanelli is in the town centre, duplicated by the still open store at the Trostre retail park, which itself is now ironically dying after managing to kill off what was left of the high street there.
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Nick Harvey
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On the subject of Wilko, here's an interesting story, with a bit of a clickbait headline:

https://www.gazetteandherald.co.uk/news ... ck-issues/
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