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27 staff lose positions in Co-op move
A BIG gap will be left in the High Street of Royal Wootton Bassett when the Co-op closes next month.
The company have confirmed that the store will be closed on November 28, with 27 members of staff losing their jobs.
The Co-op has said it will try to redeploy as many of the staff members affected by the closure within the Co-operative Group.
A spokesperson for The Co-operative Food said: “We can confirm that the Co-operative Food store on High Street, Wootton Bassett, is due to close on Wednesday, November 28.
“Staff at the store have been informed of the decision, which has been taken with the greatest regret. The closure is due to poor trading performance and is not, in any way, a reflection on the commitment and hard work of the store team.
“Every effort will be made to redeploy as many as possible of the seven full-time and 20 part-time members of staff with The Co-operative Group, or to help them find alternative employment.”
Mayor of Royal Wootton Bassett Mike Leighfield said the shop’s departure would leave a big hole in the High Street and the council would work quickly with the Royal Wootton Bassett Chamber of Commerce and Retailers Association to try to fill the gap there.
He said: “I have been going around talking to people about how we only have one small retail unit that is vacant in the High Street. It is very sad and means we now have got a big unit which is going to become empty.
“I am not surprised, it has always been the second choice supermarket because it is not a big shop. When they put the £1 charges for the car parking a lot of people said ‘it’s only 30p over there for a bigger shop’, I am not saying that is the reason but it would have had an effect.
“We want to make sure that it is not closed for any length of time because it will start detracting from the High Street.”
Shoppers have been left surprised by the closure, however, and hope that someone moves into the premises quickly.
Pam Nightingale, 67, of Royal Wootton Bassett, said: “I didn’t know it was closing down and it is a big blow for the High Street.
“We have a thriving shopping community here with a number of independent shops, so I would hope that the shop is not left standing empty for too long.”