Covid blamed as Ipswich hardware store closes

Victory Mica Hardware and DIY in Garrick Way, Ipswich, has now closed down

Victory Mica Hardware and DIY in Garrick Way, Ipswich, has now closed down - Credit: Archant

A well-known Ipswich hardware store has closed, with its owner blaming loss of trade due to Covid lockdown.

Fevzi Hurum said not enough people had been using the Victory Mica Hardware and DIY shop in Garrick Way, also down to lack of customer parking.

"The reason the shop has been closed is because of Covid. We didn't get enough funding from the government," he said.

Mr Hurum said Victory Mica Hardware had aimed to be a store serving the neighbourhood, and offered all kinds of products for people's houses and gardens.

"People didn't use it enough," he said. "If you don't make money and you are losing money,  you have to find another solution."

He added a barber, Castle Hill Barbers, had now agreed to rent the shop and would hopefully be opening in the next two or three weeks.

The long-established hardware shop, on the town's Whitton estate, was previously Richardson's Hardware for many years.

It reopened in autumn 2019, after being rebuilt following a devastating fire the previous year.

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Former owner Melvin Robinson, who ran the previous shop for 27 years, returned as manager after selling the building. At the time, he said that, when Mr Hurum asked him to manage the store, he couldn't resist returning to serve his customers again.

Melvin Robinson hard at work again in the shop Picture: RACHEL EDGE

Manager Melvin Robinson in the store when it reopened in autumn 2019 - Credit: RACHEL EDGE

It took 13 months to rebuild and refit the shop out following the fire damage. 

Some new garages which had burned down had to be rebuilt, and the store room and flat roofs replaced, and the shop itself also had to be completely redone out.

The blaze, in July 2018, saw shops and homes evacuated after thick black smoke billowed from the rear of the store and a number of gas canisters exploded.

Mr Robinson has previously said the fire had been caused by "a very small grass fire, that burned up into a major fire," with tinder-dry conditions making it easy for the fire to spread.

The store's closure comes after a number of other stores in Ipswich have closed this year, including large stores such as Debenhams, Lakeland and Thorntons. 

However, new shops have also opened, including Ipswich Microshops in the former Peacocks store and a number of businesses in St Peter's Street.