Waitrose & Partners closure announcement

Waitrose & Partners said it ‘has taken the difficult decision’ to close three branches at Helensburgh in Argyll & Bute in Scotland, Four Oaks in the West Midlands, and Waterlooville in Hampshire.

The supermarket retailer said details of the arrangements are not yet finalised but the expectation is that Helensburgh will close in May, and Four Oaks and Waterlooville will close in June.

The 403 staff working at these shops will now enter a period of consultation and as part of this, Waitrose & Partners will explore opportunities within the John Lewis Partnership (which owns and operates Waitrose & Partners and John Lewis & Partners) for those who wish to remain with the business.

Waitrose & Partners director of selling and service delivery Simon Burdess said: “We haven’t taken this decision lightly but we have to do what’s right for the business as a whole. Despite the best efforts of everyone involved, we haven’t been able to find a way to make these shops profitable in the long term.

“Our priority now is the wellbeing and future of our Partners [staff] in these shops. We will do everything we can to support them and will explore opportunities for anyone wishing to remain with the Partnership.”

Waitrose & Partners operates 338 shops in England, Scotland, Wales and the Channel Islands; 27 shops at Welcome Break locations; and Waitrose.com.

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