Big shoe shop shutting another store within DAYS following a string of closures | The Sun

A BIG shoe shop is shutting another store within days following a string of closures earlier this year.

Clarks is closing its doors to customers in Fareham Shopping Centre next week.

The store will permanently close on Saturday, August 5.

A spokesperson for the shopping centre said: "We were disappointed to learn of Clarks forthcoming closure which we believe to be August 5.

"We have endeavoured to retain them, but we understand that nationally they are looking to reduce the number of stores they operate from following the company voluntary arrangement (CVA).

"This was a corporate decision which is particularly disappointing as we understand the store was highly profitable.

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"We shall be working hard to find a replacement and have a number of interesting leads that we are pursuing."

The shoe shop last closed a store in Dundee on July 25.

Before this, it brought the shutters down on two stores in Kent in Ashford and Gillingham at the end of 2022.

Clarks was founded in 1825 by Cyrus Clark in Street, Somerset and at its peak operated across over 1,400 stores and franchises internationally.

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But as of July 2023, the brand operated just 320 stores after battling to keep a presence on the high street.

Clarks brought in McKinsey & Co to help with restructuring plans after posting a £82.9million post-tax loss back in 2019.

But Clarks was rescued from the brink with a £100million investment deal by private equity firm LionRock Capital.

A CVA was agreed which saw the Clarks family lose overall control of the company and over 50 stores were set to close following this announcement back in November 2020.

The shoe shop has dripped close dozens more stores since this date.

However, the retailer has also relocated and opened brand-new shops in recent months.

The brand opened a new store on East Street in Taunton in April following the closure of its original high street store.

Clarks also opened up a brand new store in Newcastle's Eldon Square shopping centre on May 14.

What other stores are closing?

The high street has been hit hard in recent years due to the growth of online retailing which was accelerated by the Covid-19 pandemic.

Meanwhile, runaway inflation means shoppers are holding back from spending as much.

It comes as research from the British Retail Consortium reveals retailers remain cautious about opening new stores.

It found the overall shop vacancy rate in Britain in the second quarter of 2023 was 13.9%, the same as the last three months of 2022.

Argos, House of Fraser, and a number of other big brands are also shutting stores for good this summer.

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Co-op, Poundland and Iceland will also some supermarkets before the end of the year.

We've listed all the big brands shutting shops this summer.

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