Woolies: 'It'll be a shame to see it go'

PUBLISHED: 10:40 18 December 2008 | UPDATED: 15:56 11 May 2010

ROYSTON'S Woolworths store.

ROYSTON'S Woolworths store.

SHOPPERS say Royston will lose an institution if Woolworths closes down. The beleaguered chain is believed to be on the verge of closure, and shops across the country, including the one in Royston High Street, are selling off products at a discounted ra

MANDY HILL: "It really draws people into the High Street."

SHOPPERS say Royston will lose an "institution" if Woolworths closes down. The beleaguered chain is believed to be on the verge of closure, and shops across the country, including the one in Royston High Street, are selling off products at a discounted rate.

One shopper, Mandy Hill, of Royston, said: "It's a real shame. It's going as there are so few big shops in Royston as it is.

"It really draws people into the High Street and stocks a bit of everything.

"It would be nice if we could get another chain, like Waitrose, in to replace it," she said.

JOHN INMAN: "Bigger shops have gone because they can't compete."

Barbara James, of Royston, said: "I go in there from time to time, and if it closes I'm not sure I'll still come into Royston to do my shopping.

"Woolworths has different things from the rest of the shops, and is really handy for everyday objects and bigger items."

Another shopper, John Inman, from Royston, lays the blame for the demise of Woolworths firmly at the feet of big, out of town, stores.

He said: "There's nothing left in the town centre now.

"All the bigger shops have gone because they can't compete with Tesco, so unless you want to buy a greeting card or go in a charity shop there's no reason to come into Royston."

Stephen Larcombe, chairman of the Royston and District Chamber of Commerce, said the chamber had "mixed feelings" on the possible departure of Woolworths.

"Our first reaction is one of sadness that one of the biggest shops in Royston is leaving the town. Woolworths has been an institution for so many years," he said.

"However, this could be an opportunity to get another big retailer, such as Waitrose or Marks and Spencer, into Royston.

"The Chamber and those involved in the Royston First project have been doing a lot to bring about the renewal of Royston, and we have to look at the positive side of Woolworths going as well as the negative."

BARBARA JAMES: ""It's really handy for everyday objects and bigger items.

A final closure date has yet to be announced for Woolworths, although reports yesterday (Wednesday) suggested it could be as soon as January 4.

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