55 staff affected by closure of Wokingham Marks & Spencer

Marks & Spencer
The Rose Street car park now owned by Wokingham Borough Council

After nearly 20 years in its current site, Marks & Spencer has announced that its Peach Street store is to close in the summer.

A total of 55 staff will be affected by the closure, but the company is pledging to find new jobs for the team in nearby stores.

A spokesperson for Marks & Spencer (known as M&S) said that if the closure goes ahead, it would coincide with the opening of a new store in Bracknell, which they promised would offer customers in the region an improved shopping experience.

This new store in Bracknell is set to open in July as part of its town centre regeneration project, called The Lexicon.

Gordon Scott, regional manager for Home Counties South at M&S said: “This is something we’ve given a great deal of consideration to and the decision to propose closure is not one we’ve taken lightly.

“We are working closely with our colleagues and, if the closure goes ahead, the majority would join the Bracknell team and continue to serve our customers just a few miles away.”

M&S added that the the new Bracknell store would over two floors and be bigger with improved departments in Womenswear, Menswear, Home, Kids, Beauty and Food. The store will also offer M&S’s free Collect in Store service where customers can have their M&S.com orders delivered to store the next day for free. It will also boast a 140-seat Café.

The proposed closure of M&S Wokingham is part of M&S’s five-year UK store estate programme announced in November after a full review of its UK store portfolio. It is planning to open 200 new Food-only stores similar to the ones in Lower Earley and Earley, and selling Clothing and Home from 60 fewer locations.

In addition to Wokingham, M&S has also proposed the closure of Monks Cross Simply Food, Worksop Simply Food, Portsmouth, Warrington and Slough stores.

Steve Rowe, Chief Executive of Marks & Spencer, said that the store closure is a response to the 21st century consumer.

He said: “Our customers’ shopping habits are changing. Picking up food for now or tonight rather than doing one big shop or browsing and shopping online and collecting in store are great examples of this and we are committed to adapting our business so that we stay in tune with our customers.

“Each proposal we make will be very carefully considered with our colleagues and customers firmly front of mind. It is our intention that nobody leaves M&S and we will work as hard as possible to ensure that we can deliver against this promise.”



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