Thirty eight jobs could be lost after the Co-op have announced that they are to close their Stone town centre store.
The 38 affected staff are in talks, and it’s hoped some of them could be offered other jobs within the business. A spokesman told us the closure has been blamed on a ‘decline in sales’. The Post Office which are based inside the shop confirmed they are ‘committed’ to keeping a presence in the town centre.
A Central England Co-operative spokesman said:
“The society can confirm it is proposing to close its food store and Post Office in Stone.
It is with great regret that the board of directors has taken this very difficult decision following a full review of the trading performance of the store and Post Office, which has indicated a decline in sales with increasing losses projected in future years. Like other retailers, we are constantly adapting to retail challenges at a local level and please be assured this decision was not taken lightly and is necessary to protect the long-term future and growth of the society as a whole.
Post Office Limited was given formal notification of the closure in January this year and we are working with them to try and find a new Post Office operator.
This decision in no way reflects upon the excellent endeavours of the colleagues at Stone store and Post Office and the board of directors would like to thank them for their commitment and dedication.”
The date for the proposed closure has not yet been confirmed but it won’t be before October 2017 when the lease expires.
A Post Office spokesman said:
“We can confirm that Central England Co-operative has given us notice that they intend to close their Stone store which currently houses Stone Post Office.
We would like to assure customers that the Post Office is committed to maintaining a service in the area and will work hard to ensure this. We are currently assessing options to maintain service while we work to identify a permanent solution for Post Office customers in Stone.”