BIRA comments on Wilko’s store collapse

The British Independent Retailers Association (BIRA) has expressed its concern over the news of Wilkinson’s store being on the brink of collapse; putting more than 12,000 jobs at risk.

The retailers association, which works with over 6,000 independent businesses of all sizes across the UK, said the potential collapse of such a well-established retailer could have significant implications for the high street and the retail industry as a whole.

Andrew Goodacre, CEO of BIRA, said: “We are truly saddened to hear about Wilkinson’s store facing such dire circumstances. Our thoughts go out to all the employees and their families now facing an uncertain future. Wilko has been a well-known and valued presence on the high street, and we hope that a resolution can be found to safeguard these jobs and the brand.”

The challenging economic conditions and changing consumer behaviour have created a tough environment for many retailers, including well-known and long-standing ones like Wilko.

Goodacre added: “Bira recognises the importance of a diverse and vibrant retail sector and is committed to supporting independent retailers through difficult times. We understand the immense pressure that retailers are facing, particularly amid the cost-of-living crisis.

“The rising cost of running a shop is placing an immense burden on independent retailers, and it’s high time for significant reform of business rates. To ensure the survival and prosperity of our high streets, we urgently need a guaranteed 75% retail discount tailored to support smaller retailers. As an industry, we must come together to find solutions and support each other through these unprecedented challenges.”

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