Marks and Spencer has confirmed 17 stores which are set to close within its plans to shutter over 100 stores to “reshape” its estate and become more relevant to customers.
These closures are expected to affect 1,045 jobs and the retailer said it will enter a period of consultation with these colleagues with the intention of retaining as many people as possible. To date 1,891 colleagues have been impacted by the company’s restructure programme with 1,591 being redeployed to other homes within the business.
These proposals are part of M&S’ UK store estate programme which was first announced in November 2016 and accelerated in May 2018 after better than expected levels of sales transfer from closures and a target to have one-third of sales online by 2022. As part of this accelerated plan, M&S said it remains on track and on budget to close over 100 stores in total.
Today (Tuesday 15 January) the company announced 17 of these 100 stores which are set to shutter, these are: Ashford, Barrow, Bedford, Boston, Buxton, Cwmbran, Deal, Felixstowe, Huddersfield, Hull, Junction One Antrim Outlet, Luton Arndale, Newark, Northwich, Rotherham, Sutton Coldfield and Weston Super Mare. This is in addition to the 30 which have already been closed and the eight which were announced to be closed last year.
Sacha Berendji, retail, operations and property director at Marks and Spencer said: “We’re continuing to transform M&S with pace and as part of this we are making good progress with our plans to close over 100 stores – radically reshaping our store estate to become more relevant for our customers. Proposing to close stores is never easy, for our colleagues, customers or the local community, but it is vital for the future of M&S.
“Where we have closed stores, we are continuing to see an encouraging number of customers choosing other nearby locations and shopping on M&S.com.”