A trio of stores run by homeware retailer Wilko in the West Midlands are to close down – placing more than 80 jobs under threat.
The company has announced the unit at The Fort shopping park in Castle Bromwich, north Birmingham, will close on February 26, its outlet in Redditch will shut on May 21 and finally the Sutton Coldfield town centre branch will cease trading on June 25.
They are among a list of 15 sites across England and Wales which have been tabled for closure by October 1.
The move is threatening 31 roles at The Fort, 30 posts in Redditch and a further 22 in Sutton Coldfield while more than 300 jobs are at risk across the portfolio of stores earmarked for closure.
Wilko said it hoped to place affected colleagues in roles at other shops nearby.
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The company, which is headquartered in Nottinghamshire, said the announcement followed a review of the 414-strong portfolio which identified sites classed as ‘legacy’ locations while others had outdated lease agreements.
This latest news would not impact new store or store relocation programmes, it said.
Chief executive Jerome Saint-Marc said: “Our history is steeped in serving our customers and communities going back to 1930 but there’s no denying the way people shop with us and where they want to shop with us is changing.
“As a business, we’re evolving and this includes working with landlords for more favourable terms, as well as looking at locations and store formats.
“We’ll continue to pull together to make our business better to secure the future of over 16,000 team members.
“We’ll be doing everything we can to support our affected team members who will be offered any available positions in nearby stores. We apologise to those communities where stores are closing.”
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Roger Jenkins, national officer for trade union GMB, said: “These closures are devastating for Wilko workers and the communities who use them.
“It’s yet another nail in the High Street’s coffin and GMB calls on councils and landlords to review commercial leases and offer lower rents.
“Empty high streets and shopping centres are in no-one’s interest and, with 400 shops a week closing, this is inevitable unless the costs of premises can be reduced.
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“GMB will now meet with Wilko members to discuss our next steps.”