The Local Data Company (LDC) has published a list of stores that it believes could be under threat – including in Aberdeen, Ayr and Dundee – after M&S said last week that it would be axeing 30 clothing and homewares branches as part of a renewed focus on food.
LDC director Matthew Hopkinson said: “There are 35 towns and cities that have more than two M&S stores either on the high street, in a shopping centre or on the edge of town in a retail park. If one removes the large urban centres such as London, Glasgow and other cities, there are 22 towns where one might question the need for two stores.
“Examples include Milton Keynes, Bournemouth, Durham, Fareham, Stockton on Tees, Swindon and Chichester.”
LDC’s list of M&S stores at risk
Aberdeen, Ayr, Banbury, Barrow-in-Furness, Basildon, Birmingham, Blackburn, Blackpool, Bolton, Boston, Bournemouth, Brentwood, Bridlington, Brierley Hill, Bristol, Buxton, Carlisle, Chichester, Coventry, Darlington, Dundee, Durham, Fareham, Hereford, Hull, Kettering, King’s Lynn, Leamington Spa, Leeds, Leicester, Liverpool, Macclesfield, Maidstone, Manchester, Mansfield, Milton Keynes, Newcastle upon Tyne, Northwich, Nottingham, Peterborough, Preston, Rochdale, Sheffield, Southampton, St Albans, Stockton-on-Tees, Stoke, Swansea, Swindon, Sunderland, Tunbridge Wells, Warrington
M&S said: “We are very disappointed that anyone would choose to speculate in this way. This list is not based on any M&S data and we have not published any locations. This list is not from M&S and it does not mean the stores involved form part of the official closure programme.
“What we have done is outlined plans to improve our store estate over the next five years which include opening 200 new Food stores and selling Clothing and Home from 60 fewer stores.”