Stowmarket: Stead and Simpson store set to close

A HIGH street store in a market town has announced that it will close due to poor performance.

Shoe shop, Stead & Simpson based in Ipswich Street, Stowmarket, will follow the Cherry Tree Butcher’s store which shut in the street earlier in the year.

Bosses have said they will confirm the date of the store’s closure in the coming weeks.

A spokeswoman for Stead & Simpson said: “We can confirm that the Stead & Simpson store in Stowmarket is closing down due to poor performance and rising costs which make the location unsustainable.

“The decision to close a store is always a difficult one and is not taken lightly. We always try to re-deploy any staff affected to nearby stores wherever possible.”

The spokeswoman was unable to comment further about the number or the future of the staff employed at the store.

Dave Benham, corporate manager of economic development and tourism for Babergh and Mid Suffolk District Councils said: “It’s disappointing to see someone close that’s been trading over the years, but it’s a sign of the times.

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“I do not know what is likely to go in there at the moment, it’s very difficult at the moment, we have plans to redevelop the town centre but it is all on hold because of the retail market.

“I think we are holding our own in Stowmarket. We’ve had a couple of new independent stores in town, which is good.”

In recent months there could have been further vacant spaces in Ipswich Street but the town’s Birthdays and Peacocks stores were both saved from closure.

Shoezone, who bought Stead and Simpson in 2008, also run a store in Ipswich Street.