Mar 24, 2021

John Lewis will not reopen eight stores when lockdown ends

UK department store chain John Lewis will not reopen eight of its 42 stores after the current lockdown ends in April, putting more than 1,400 jobs at risk. Department stores in Aberdeen, Sheffield, Peterborough and York will remain closed, plus four smaller "At Home" stores in Tunbridge Wells, Ashford, Basingstoke and Chester. A similar number of jobs were already lost last year when eight other stores did not reopen after the first lockdown. The group, which is the UK's biggest employee-owned business, said the decision followed "Substantial research to identify and cater for new customer shopping habits in different parts of the country" and that the eight stores were "Financially challenged prior to the pandemic". John Lewis went into the coronavirus pandemic with a total of 50 stores, an amount many considered about right compared with rivals such as Debenhams, which had well over 100 and has since gone into administration.

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