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Morrisons stores in Stowmarket and Braintree to close on April 3

PUBLISHED: 11:49 12 February 2016 | UPDATED: 15:54 12 February 2016

Morrisons in Stowmarket.

Morrisons in Stowmarket.

Archant

The Morrisons supermarket in Stowmarket will close on April 3, it has been announced.

The chain’s store in Braintree will also close on the same day.

The Bradford-based supermarket chain confirmed it would be closing the stores following a consultation process with colleagues, but would still attempt to reduce any job losses.

A Morrisons spokesman said: “Following a consultation process with colleagues, we regret to say that we are closing our stores in Stowmarket and Braintree.

“This process has been extremely difficult. We have looked at a whole range of options to make the stores viable but none gave us confidence that we could run it successfully. Our aim is to reduce any job losses, where possible, by finding roles elsewhere in our organisation.”

Although it is not known how many staff are currently employed at the Stowmarket store, a report by the EADT in December 2010 said when the store announced it was coming to the town that it would create 50 full-time and 80 part-time jobs.

Mid Suffolk District Councillor for nearby Onehouse, John Matthissen, said: “It’s very disappointing.

“But one bright note is that in due course Wickes and Travis Perkins will be recruiting for their premises on Gipping Way.”

With regards to the site in Stowmarket, Dave Benham, Mid Suffolk’s boss for economic development and tourism, said the closure was “a shame” and added: “We have had some tentative discussions with a retail developer that has been in touch with us but there’s nothing beyond that at this stage.

“I think everybody was waiting for what was going to happen to the store. We helped them with some data about the town to show it was growing and a happening place to be and that maybe it wasn’t the best idea but I think the chances of turning that around were a long shot.

“We will be going in there as soon as we can, going in with job centre staff and doing what we can to support them and the staff there.”

The mayor of Stowmarket, Barry Salmon, said: “It is really quite sad that they are going. I feel a great deal of sympathy for the people that work there.

“It’s a loss to the town.”

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