Furniture retailer looks to the future

INDEPENDENT furniture retailer Glasswells is today launching a closing down sale at its Martlesham store, near Ipswich.

The company, which opened a new 73,000 sq ft store in Ranelagh Road, Ipswich, in 2008, has already given existing customers a preview of the closing-down offers, with the sale open to all from today.

Glasswells has reported a significant shift in footfall away from the Beardmore Park unit in Martlesham, from where it has traded for 15 years, since the opening of the �5million Ranelagh Road store.

Paul Glasswell, managing director, said: “The overall shopping experience that customers have in Martlesham is incomparable to what is offered by the modern space and layout that greets them when visiting us in Ranelagh Road.

“The change in footfall across the two stores has proven to us which location our customers prefer to shop in, and although the decision to close Martlesham wasn’t easy, we needed to focus our efforts in line with customer needs and expectations.”

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He added: “It was always our intention to phase out the Martlesham store so that we can concentrate our efforts on making our Ipswich store even better.”

The opening of the Glasswells store in Ranelagh Road, in December 2008, involved the creation of around 70 jobs.

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The store has breathed new life into the former Orwell Retail Park, now named the Glasswells Retail Park, with other retailers on the site having also benefitted from the face-lift.

Mr Glasswell said that a majority of the seven staff employed at Martlesham would be redeployed to the company’s other stores and it was possible that others would follow if futher vacancies arose.

No final closing date for the Martlesham store had been fixed, with the timing depending on how quickly stock sold out, but it was likely to remain open until some time in November.

Mr Glasswell added: “It’s the biggest clearance event in our history and a one-off opportunity.

“Everything must go so there will be some great deals to be had.”

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