max temp: 15°C

min temp: 11°C

ESTD 1874 Search

Stowmarket/ Diss: 15 staff to be re-employed following purchase of Godfrey DIY stores

17:13 05 February 2013

The Diss and Stowmarket Godfrey DIY stores are to continue to trade after being purchased out of liquidation

The Diss and Stowmarket Godfrey DIY stores are to continue to trade after being purchased out of liquidation


RETAIL chief Barry Godfrey has vowed to re-employ 15 staff and restock the Godfrey’s DIY businesses in Diss and Stowmarket after buying the stores out of liquidation.


Mr Godfrey used his company Harvey House Retail to purchase the two businesses – and their assets– as going concerns during a creditors meeting with insolvency specialists McTear Williams & Wood on January 30.

The liquidation buy-out will now spark a “massive clearance liquidation sale” at the two stores– although question marks still remain over the future of the Norwich store on Riverside Road.

Andrew McTear, insolvency practitioner, said dozens of parties had been interested in acquiring the two businesses, and that they had come to within hours of devaluing the stores because the sale had to be completed before a new property rental period started on February 1.

The announcement comes just weeks after Mr Godfrey had instructed McTear, Williams and Wood to begin the process of winding down the company, which had seen its sales and cashflow dwindling due to the knock-on effect of the housing crisis in 2008, poor weather, and increased competition from other big name DIY retailers.

But despite the Norwich business struggling to remain a viable, both the Diss and Stowmarket stores had been operating profitably. In a statement, Mr Godfrey said: “We are pleased to have been successful in buying the Diss and Stowmarket assets from the liquidator and to be able to re-employ about 15 people.

“We are now working hard to restock the Diss and Stowmarket stores and, to make way for this, we will be running a massive clearance liquidation sale over the next few weeks.”

However, he added: “The future of the Norwich store remains uncertain.”

Godfrey, which generated a £5million turnover last year, warned in December that it planned to downsize its business, with the possibility of losing up to 20 out of a total of 26 jobs at its Norwich store on Riverside Road, and up to half of the staff at stores in Diss and Stowmarket, where it had employed 14 and 11 people respectively.

Mr McTear said: “We received keen interest from half a dozen parties in the Diss and Stowmarket stores and set a deadline for offers on the day of the liquidation.

“To preserve value in the stores we had to conclude the sale before a new property rental period started on February 1 this year and we achieved this with only eight hours to spare.

“Our job now is to agree creditors’ claims and pay a dividend to creditors. In fact since being appointed we have worked around the clock to pay as much of the 50 employees claims as possible and managed to press the button transferring the funds on day two of the liquidation.

“This is the first time in my career of over 25 years that we have been able to pay employee preferential claims so quickly but from the start we were determined to do everything we could to get some money to the employees as the company’s bank account had been frozen and it was unable to release the January wages.”



From left, Michael Francis, store manager, Colchester, Robert Smith, dealer principle, Colchester and Norwich, and  Emmanuel Greffier, store manager, Norwich with the Bang & Olufsen UK Partner of the Year trophy.

The team at the Bang & Olufsen store in Colchester is celebrating after beating off competition from 60 other dealerships to be named as the audio equipment firm’s UK Partner of the Year.

B&Q in Anglia Retail Park will close by 2017.

Home improvement giant B&Q is set to close one of its biggest Suffolk stores - at Anglia Retail Park on the edge of Ipswich, it can be revealed.

The Nestle Purina site in Sudbury

A Sudbury pet food factory is under increasing pressure to tackle foul odours as it is revealed an environmental regulator recorded 40 stench complaints since last month.

Kelly-Anne Byres of Poppy Nursing and Care Services.
Picture: Stephen Waller  www.stephenwaller.com

Five businesses and organisations from Suffolk and north Essex have been named among the finalists in the 2015 East of England Business Champions awards.

Ipswich Building Society general sales manager Jo Leah and her friend Libby Smith, also from Ipswich,preparing for their charity challenge involving a 100km trip down the Zambezi River.

A executive from Ipswich Building Society will today be starting a challenge to travel 100km along Africa’s Zambezi River in aid of a local charity.


Fairline testing facility at Ipswich.

The new owner of Fairline Boats has expressed confidence in the business, despite laying off more than 100 of its production staff.

Mark and Tessa Riley, of Riley and Riley Jewellers in Ipswich, were runners-up in the Ipswich Independents business competition.

The finalists in the Ipswich Independents Award 2015 have been announced.

The Saints area in Ipswich town centre has been ranked as one of the best high streets in Britain as part of the Great British High Street Awards 2015.

Shopkeepers say the prestigious recognition means Ipswich can now rival Bury St Edmunds and Woodbridge as top shopping destinations.

Investigatory work ahead of the East Anglia ONE wind farm continues on the River Deben

Investigatory drilling work is continuing on the River Deben ahead of the construction of the East Anglia ONE offshore wind farm.

Alex Fairfull, managing director of Suffolk Installers in Needham Market.

More than 300 jobs in Suffolk and north Essex are at risk due to a proposed cut in Government support for solar energy, an industry organisation has claimed.

Most read

Most commented

Topic pages