More retailers set to shut up shop at sites in Leamington

TWO major retailers with stores next door to each other in Leamington have made announcements in the last seven days which are further blows to the town’s high street economy.

Administrators Deloitte confirmed last Thursday that HMV’s branch in the Royal Priors will close along with 65 other stores in the UK in the next two months. A ‘closing down’ sale has started at the Leamington store, which employs 13 members of staff.

On Wednesday clothing chain Republic, which has a shop in the Royal Priors, announced that it had appointed accountants from Ernst & Young to take over running of the firm.

Republic stores will remain open until further notice, with the administrators hoping to sell the business as a going concern.

Administrator Hunter Kelly said: “The brand Republic is well recognised, particularly in the North.

“It has a powerful website offering, owns well-known brand names and has some very attractive and profitable stores.”

DVD rental company Blockbuster, which has a store in Myton Road, is following in the footsteps of HMV and Jessops, which closed its branch in the Parade recently.

The Leamington Blockbuster store, which employs about five members of staff, is among the 164 branches which will be closed in the coming weeks.

Lee Manning, of administrators Deloitte, said: “We have continued to review the performance of individual stores since our appointment a month ago and have concluded that further closures are necessary in order to restructure the company for sale. We would like to thank the company’s employees for their support and professionalism during this difficult time and we are also grateful for the continued support of customers. We are in discussions with a number of parties interested in purchasing all or parts of the business and will update on progress in due course.”

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