Sainsburys To Close Merry Hill Store

The branch, which opened in October 1989, will shut for the final time on December 30th putting almost 200 jobs at risk.

The move is the second major jobs blow to the centre in two months, after BHS closed in August with the loss of nearly 100 staff.

The decision to shut the store down has been described as ‘disrepectful’ by a trade union chief, while Brierley Hill ward councillor Rachel Harris said the closure was ‘a shame’.

A Sainsbury’s spokesman said 193 jobs are at risk, but the company will ‘look to redeploy people wherever possible.’ The spokesman said:

“Like all retailers, we keep our estate under review to ensure our business is operating as efficiently and effectively as possible and to ensure we provide customers with the best possible service.

“On this occasion, we have announced plans to close our Merry Hill supermarket.

“We’re now conducting a consultation process with all affected colleagues who we will support through the difficult period ahead.”

Caroline Crolley, regional officer at Unite, criticised the superstore’s decision.

She said: “I am absolutely astounded. There had been no indication for the company that this was going to happen. We are obviously going to be demanding a meeting with the company as they have informed our members that the site, like others, is not as profitable as they expect.

“It’s absolutely disgusting. Our members have co-operated with changes and this is the Christmas present they give them.

“We feel the way it has been done is disrespectful to our members who deserve better.”

Councillor Harris spoke of her disappointment, saying: “It’s a shame we’re losing a little bit of diversity in terms of the retail offer in the centre.”

A spokesman for Intu, which owns the centre, said: “We have a number of exciting new brands currently in negotiations to take their first stores at Intu Merry Hill, whilst others are looking at their existing stores to make sure they are making the most of their presence in the centre. We’re sure that this investment will create new jobs.”


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