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East Anglia Future 50

Closure of another Ipswich store confirmed

PUBLISHED: 11:40 20 May 2019 | UPDATED: 11:40 20 May 2019

The closure of Ipswich's Cotswold Outdoor has been confirmed. Photo: Archant.

The closure of Ipswich's Cotswold Outdoor has been confirmed. Photo: Archant.

Archant

Ipswich's Cotswold Outdoor is the latest store in the town centre to announce its closure.

The legendary Great White Horse Hotel site also used to be home to a Starbucks. Photo: Lucy Taylor.The legendary Great White Horse Hotel site also used to be home to a Starbucks. Photo: Lucy Taylor.

The Tavern Street shop will be shut by parent company Outdoor & Cycle Concepts (O&CC) as part of the firm's company voluntary arrangement (CVA).

The UK retailer will also close the Peterborough branch of Cotswold Outdoor and Bridgend's Snow + Rock store over the next three months.

While O&CC's chief executive Greg Nieuwenhuys stepped down last month, the firm's managing director Jose Finch explained the cuts were vital for the future of the business.

MORE: Fears grow as more Ipswich stores reveal closure plans

"This positive outcome is an important step in our transformation programme to build a stronger future", he said.

The closure of Ipswich's Cotswold Outdoor has been confirmed. Photo: Archant.The closure of Ipswich's Cotswold Outdoor has been confirmed. Photo: Archant.

"We will now work hard to activate our proposal ensuring that stores closures and job losses are kept to a minimum while continuing to offer our customers unparalleled expert service and the very best products from quality brands."

The firm operates 120 stores across the UK and will now be seeking lowers rents from landlords in 50 of them after 97% of creditors approved its CVA plan.

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The closure of the Ipswich branch has provided yet another blow to the town centre - which has seen a flurry of shops announce they will be shutting down in recent weeks.

Riley & Riley Jewellers in Buttermarket, Trespass in Westgate Street and Ohh Deer in Thoroughfare have all revealed closure plans this month.

On top of this, Office Outlet on the outskirts of the town centre, is also expected to reveal its closing date within the coming weeks.

All the stores have pointed to a decline in footfall, both in Ipswich and across the UK generally, as important factors in their demise and Cotswold Outdoor has likewise blamed the trend.

Cotswold Outdoor's departure from Ipswich also questions about the future of one of the town centre's most historic sites - The Great White Horse Hotel.

The Grade II listed building, originally known as The Tavern, has served the town since 1518.

Since the hotel closed down in 2008 the site has been transformed into a retail unite.

However with the outdoor clothing and equipment stores departure the legendary site will now lay empty.

It had also previously housed a Starbucks coffee shop until September last year.

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