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‘They’ll all shut down soon’ moan shoppers as major fashion retailer with 350 stores set to close branch


SHOPPERS have groaned “they’ll all shut down soon” as a major fashion retailer with 350 stores gears up to close a shop.

It comes after the chain shut a branch in Suffolk just five days ago, to customer shock.

A major fashion retailer with 350 branches is set to close one of its stores

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A major fashion retailer with 350 branches is set to close one of its storesCredit: Alamy

Peacocks, which once had more than 400 stores across the UK, is shuttering its branch in Boscombe, Bournemouth in months.

The site in the Sovereign Shopping Centre will welcome in customers for the final time on April 6, a store member confirmed.

Local news reports staff have put up signs in the windows informing residents of the closure date.

Shoppers’ next nearest Peacocks branch is in Poole, almost six miles away.

Read more in Store Closures

Customers who rely on the store to pick up everything from menswear, womenswear, shoes and accessories, have shared their devastation after discovering it will close.

One said: “They’ll all shut down soon. There will be only online shopping, mark my words.”

Meanwhile, a second said: “Sad news day again,” and a third added: “Only pound shops and coffee shops exist in Boscombe nowadays.”

And a fourth commented: “More misery and angst for the staff.”

It comes after Peacocks closed a site in Bury St Edmunds, Suffolk, just days ago.

The branch in the Arc Shopping Centre pulled down its shutters on January 25, according to local news reports.

One shopper branded the closure “another hole in the high street” while another simply wrote “tut tut.”

Peacocks fell into administration in November 2020 and shut half of its then more than 420 stores in a major blow for shoppers.

The fashion chain went bust after struggling for business amid the coronavirus pandemic and multiple lockdowns.

However, it has been slowly reappearing on the high street, building its portfolio back up to around 350 stores.

In October last year, the chain revealed it had plans to open seven new stores across Wales, England and Scotland.

It did not confirm exact opening dates for the new stores.

Which other retailers are closing and opening branches?

Retailers have taken a hit in recent years as shoppers increasingly turn to online retail and away from physical branches.

High energy and wage costs have seen businesses struggling too, while shoppers budgets have been squeezed due to high inflation.

You can find out more about the collapse of the high street in the video above.

The pressure on businesses has seen many forced to close stores and consolidate their portfolios, while others have collapsed into administration.

Wilko and Paperchase both went bust last year, seeing hundreds of shops shut and thousands of staff laid off.

Meanwhile, Boots said it would massively consolidate its portfolio of stores from 2,200 to 1,900 in a blow for shoppers.

The three chains were not alone in closing branches.

Recent figures from the Centre for Retail Research reveal over 10,000 shops closed for the last time in 2023, and almost 120,000 jobs were lost across the sector.

That said, the figures are lower than they have been in recent years, with over 150,000 retail jobs lost in 2022.

Meanwhile, despite the backdrop, it’s not bad news for all retailers and some are opening stores across the UK.

B&M, which currently runs over 650 UK stores, recently announced plans to open 17 more across January and February.

Asda also plans to open 21 new locations before the end of the month as well.

The retailer said it wants to have 1,000 stores running across the UK and Northern Ireland by March this year.

The Sun contacted Peacocks for comment.

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