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'It's just not viable' - Shoe shop to close after just five months

PUBLISHED: 13:32 09 September 2019 | UPDATED: 13:32 09 September 2019

Maresa Shoes, in Museum Street, Ipswich, is set to close down just five months after opening. Photo: Archant.

Maresa Shoes, in Museum Street, Ipswich, is set to close down just five months after opening. Photo: Archant.

Archant

Maresa Shoes, in Museum Street, is set to shut down by the end of September.

Marion Gordon, Lisa Southgate and Sharon Hall when Maresa  Shoes first opened.  Picture: Sarah Lucy BrownMarion Gordon, Lisa Southgate and Sharon Hall when Maresa Shoes first opened. Picture: Sarah Lucy Brown

The store initially opened in April selling specialist footwear with an emphasis on comfort and style.

Directors Sharon Hall and Marion Gordon run 1st For Feet Chiropody Clinic next door and started the new venture to cater for clients who struggled find shoes which fit properly.

Maresa Shoes, in Museum Street, Ipswich, is set to close down just five months after opening. Photo: Archant.Maresa Shoes, in Museum Street, Ipswich, is set to close down just five months after opening. Photo: Archant.

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However, staff have said the store failed to attract enough customers and blamed the dwindling footfall of Ipswich town centre.

Maresa Shoes, in Museum Street, Ipswich, is set to close down just five months after opening. Photo: Archant.Maresa Shoes, in Museum Street, Ipswich, is set to close down just five months after opening. Photo: Archant.

"It's just not financially viable, people are buying everything on the internet", explained one member of staff who wished to remain anonymous.

"Footfall in the town is so low, there's nobody around.

Maresa Shoes, in Museum Street, Ipswich, is set to close down just five months after opening. Photo: Archant.Maresa Shoes, in Museum Street, Ipswich, is set to close down just five months after opening. Photo: Archant.

"Ipswich is so quiet, it's actually quite eerie when you think about it and how it was a few years ago.

"It really worries me, there's going to be no one around - what's going to be left in town?"

The British Retail Consortium (BRC) and Springboard recently warned high street retailers will continue to struggle as customer footfall dipped yet again.

In August, the high street saw a decline of 1.9% from the previous month.

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Helen Dickinson, chief executive of the BRC, said the downward trajectory was due to "increasingly cautious consumers" who are "holding back on discretionary spending".

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A closing down sale is currently under way at Maresa Shoes as the store looks to clear stock before closing up shop.

The shop offers a more bespoke service than most shoe stores in the town providing a fitting service and stocking brands such as Van-Dal, Padders and Scholl to accommodate for wider feet.

And the staff member said customers in need of the service were left devastated to hear news of the closure.

"They have really loved us being here, people are very upset we have to close but there's just nobody in town," they added.

The closure of Maresa Shoes will not impact 1st For Feet Chiropody Clinic which is run as a separate business.

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