John Lewis is reportedly planning major restructuring moves, which could see shops axed from the high street and result in the loss of hundreds of jobs.
The UK’s oldest department store is said to be in talks with landlords over potential store closures and the possibility of job losses after facing struggles amid the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.
Sharon White, Chair at John Lewis, is believed to have have penned a letter to staff and partners this week.
In the letter, as seen and reported by the Evening Standard, Ms White reportedly told staff members: “The difficult reality is that we have too much store space for the way people want to shop now. As difficult as it is, we now know that it is highly unlikely that we will reopen all our John Lewis stores.”
“Regrettably, it is likely that there will implications for some Partners’ jobs.”
“We are in active discussions with landlords about ending some leases and renegotiating others to make the terms more flexible.”
There are currently 20 John Lewis open to the public since non-essential retailers were given the green light by the UK government to begin trading again from 15th June and plans to open a further 10 stores on 13th July were announced today.
This includes the Trafford Centre store.
Speaking on behalf of the retailer regarding the announcement of store reopenings, Bérangère Michel at John Lewis, said: “I am really pleased to announce more shop openings in the next couple of weeks, and in particular our first to reopen in Wales and Scotland.”
“We continue to stick to our safe, not fast approach.”
“We are learning as we go and tweaking our approach to give our customers and Partners the best possible experience.”
Back in March, John Lewis revealed that its annual profits had slumped 23% to £123m and it slashed its annual bonus to 2% of salary.
Sharon White, Chair at John Lewis, stated at the time: “The pandemic has led to profound shifts in the way we all live and shop, even our sense of self. While this coming period of transformation will sadly mean the end of some Partnership stories, we have to change for the future of the Partnership.”
“We have to resize the business – facing into and not shying away from difficult decisions – and seize the opportunities to regrow.”
“The prize is a sustainable Partnership that is still thriving in 100 years.”
For more information ahead of store reopenings, visit the John Lewis website here.
Irish pub in Altrincham closed by police for ‘offering sexual services’
A pub in Altrincham has been ordered to close after a police raid today found it was being used to ‘offer sexual services for reward’.
Officers also found that a vulnerable woman had been trafficked from outside Trafford to work at The Railway.
The traditional Irish pub on Manchester Road has been ordered to close for three months.
Two people have been arrested for crimes relating to prostitution for gain.
The news follows a raid where officers found ‘significant evidence’ that the pub’s premises were being used to offer sexual services.
Photos shared by Greater Manchester Police show a closure order being taped to The Railway’s front door.
It reads: “These premises have been issued with a closure order to prevent nuisance and disorder.
“Trafford Community Safety Partnership takes action to protect local communities from the harm caused by crime and anti-social behaviour.”
A statement from GMP says: “Officers from GMP have carried out a search warrant on the Railway Pub on Manchester Road in Altrincham accompanied by colleagues from Trafford Council’s Community Safety Team.
“Significant evidence was found on the premises indicating that the premises were being used to offer sexual services for reward and a vulnerable woman, trafficked from outside Trafford to work there was found on the premises.
“Two persons have been arrested for crimes relating to controlling prostitution for gain and today, the Magistrates issued an order on application from the council closing the premises for three months. A review of the premises license will now be requested.”
The Railway reopened as an Irish bar in 2021 following a fire in late 2020.
Consumer watchdog orders Tesco to make Clubcard prices ‘clearer’ in stores
Tesco is to start making Clubcard Prices “even clearer” in stores across the UK after a row with the leading consumer watchdog.
The supermarket‘s Clubcard loyalty scheme has more than 20 million people signed-up nationwide, making it one of the most popular of its kind on the market, by far – but over the coming weeks, members will start to see changes in the way Clubcard Prices are displayed when they’re shopping in Tesco stores.
That’s because, the retailer has been told to make the prices “even clearer” by the UK’s leading consumer watchdog.
It’s all to do with unit pricing, as Which? had said that Tesco’s decision not to display this on its Clubcard offers could, essentially, be breaking the law.
Tesco has been ordered to make Clubcard prices ‘clearer’ in stores / Credit: The Manc Group
According to BBC claims, Which? reported Tesco to the regulator, the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA), in June of last year, as competition rules state that unit prices could be seen as “material information”.
This means that they’re something most people would need in order to make an informed decision about how to get the best value from what they by.
But while Tesco apparently said at the time that Which?’s claims were “ill-founded”, it looks to have changed its tune now, as the supermarket’s bosses have this week announced that unit prices will now be displayed in stores.
Consumer watchdog Which? said the supermarket could be breaking the law unless it displayed ‘unit prices’ / Credit: The Manc Group
Tesco’s UK CEO Jason Tarry said the retailer is “working harder than ever” to help make sure customers get “great value” when they shop in stores nationwide.
“We want our customers to be able to see just how well these offers stack up,” Mr Tarry said.
“If you are in store, you will now start to see that the way that we display our Clubcard Prices will not only show the total price, but also the unit price of the product (by volume or weight), to allow a direct comparison of the price per unit between the Clubcard Prices offer and the price of alternative products.”
The changes will start being introduced in all UK stores over the coming weeks / Credit: Tesco plc
Mr Tarry claims this is something Tesco’s been “planning to do for some time”, and is “pleased” the retailer is now ready to make the change.
He continued: “Over the coming weeks, these changes will appear in all our stores, as our colleagues update millions of price labels on the shelf edge, and we will also be adding these unit prices to our Clubcard Prices deals online.