Review of the year: January

PUBLISHED: 08:36 23 December 2009 | UPDATED: 16:13 11 May 2010

ROYSTON S Woolworths store closed its doors for the last time. The High Street store closed on January 5 after the financially stricken chain went into receivership, leaving staff facing redundancy. Store manager Mark Halfacre said the closure marked the

ROYSTON'S Woolworths store closed its doors for the last time.

The High Street store closed on January 5 after the financially stricken chain went into receivership, leaving staff facing redundancy.

Store manager Mark Halfacre said the closure marked "the end of an era".

He said: "The staff have been through the mill emotionally.

"As there is no Woolworths redundancy package, workers with up to 23 years experience will be signing on at job centres this week. What a sad day this is."

The decision to close Woolworths had been made prior to Christmas, meaning the staff endured a miserable festive period.

Mr Halfacre added: "Special thanks must go to the people of Royston for their heartfelt messages of support and encouragement.

"They made our job a little bit easier to cope with over Christmas."

Almost a year on the Woolworths shop remains vacant, with no new tenants on the horizon.

Also in the news.

- A charity was set up in memory of Nicola Emmerson, a Royston girl who died a sudden cardiac death while out celebrating her 18th birthday. The Nicola Emmerson trust is raising cash to fund research into the condition which killed her.

- It was announced that the Priory Cinema site in Royston would be used for social housing. North Herts Homes purchased the land and later unveiled a planned scheme of houses and flats.

- Royston's second largest employer Johnson Matthey announced up to 100 redundancies. The firm, based on the Orchard Road industrial estate, were feeling the affects of the economic downturn.

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