New card shop opening in Ipswich town centre
PUBLISHED: 12:19 31 October 2019 | UPDATED: 13:05 31 October 2019
A card shop will be the latest business to open its doors in Ipswich town centre when it replaces the tReds shoe store.
As of tomorrow there will be one less empty shop in Ipswich as Cards Direct will open its 31st branch in Westgate Street next to Claire's Accessories.
After the closure of the popular shoe shop tReds earlier this month, the new card shop is beginning to take shape, with employees spotted setting up displays inside ahead of the opening.
The independent retailer, which also has stores in Colchester and Lowestoft, specialises in high quality greeting cards, gifts, packaging, balloons and partyware at "direct from the factory prices".
Mark Watkins, Card Direct's retail operations manager, says that opening a store in Ipswich has been the company's target for some time.
He said: "We are very excited to be opening in Ipswich. It's a great vibrant market town which is ideal for a business such as ours."
Cards Direct was previously reported to have been given planning permission to join Pret A Manger in the former Grimwades store in the heart of Ipswich.
It looked set to occupy about half of the ground floor of the former department store with its entrance on to Westgate Street, opposite Debenhams.
However, in January this year the popular sandwich chain Pret confirmed it would no longer be opening a store on Ipswich Cornhill - and therefore Cards Direct was forced to look elsewhere.
Mr Watkins says there were various reasons why occupying the former Grimwades store didn't work out, but he knew that they wanted to be near to the town's Cornhill.
He added: "We needed to be here in the centre so when this store came up it was the perfect opportunity."
Cards Direct joins a number of other card and gift stores in the town - such as Clintons, Paperchase and Card Factory which is just opposite.
Mr Watkins says Cards Direct will "be a useful addition for Ipswich shoppers to the range that is already out there".