Local Carpetright stores may close

Carpetright Newtownabbey. Pic by Google.
Carpetright Newtownabbey. Pic by Google.

Two Co Antrim Carpetright stores may potentially close this Autumn.

In a statement issued by the company, the Ballymena and Newtownabbey branches are listed as being two of the 81 shops across the UK which may close in September.

Detailing the proposed closures, a Carpetright spokesperson said: “We’re announcing today some tough but necessary steps to address our legacy property issues and restore our profitability. We are launching a CVA proposal that, if approved, will result in the closure of 81 poorly located or over-rented stores, from a UK total in excess of 400, later this year. Planned closures will not affect our customers, all orders will be fulfilled either by the original store or a neighbouring Carpetright where necessary.

“Regrettably, we expect this will mean that around 300 colleagues would leave the business but we will make every effort to find alternative roles for those affected wherever possible. We’re also announcing that we plan to follow the CVA with an equity financing to raise £60m of new funds to invest in our stores and online offer, to strengthen the competitive position of the ongoing business.”

The spokesperson added: “It’s important to stress that throughout the CVA process, we will continue trading as normal and customers can continue to shop with Carpetright with confidence. We do not expect the proposed stores to close before September 2018.

“We will remain in close contact with all colleagues to keep them fully informed as we move through this process.

“We are not in a position to disclose any specific job loss numbers by store or area at this stage and will not be until we conclude this process. We will redeploy as many colleagues as possible.”

Commenting on the proposals, Mayor of Mid and East Antrim Borough Council, Cllr Paul Reid said: “Very sad news. My thoughts are with all the employees affected and their families. We offer them our full support over the days, weeks and months ahead.”