'Death of high street' as fashion retailer with 400 locations shuts shop for good TODAY – is your local going? | The Sun

A FASHION retailer which as 400 locations nationwide is shutting one of its branches today for good.

The branch of New Look in Shirley, Southampton, is closing for good today after a string of closures.

Although fans of the retailer won’t have too far to go for their nearest outlet which is in the Westquay Shopping Centre in the city centre.

A spokesperson for New Look said: "As part of the normal course of business, New Look occasionally closes stores, while also undertaking relocations and new site openings.

“While some sites have closed recently, we have opened a number of new stores this year and we remain on the lookout for appropriate new opportunities across the country.”

Local residents were gutted by the announcement, with one saying it marks the "death of the high street".

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Another said: "Such a shame, it’s been there since I was little. Was always the most affordable retail shop back then. Not so much now."

Meanwhile, a third sad shopper said: "Love it there many memories."

A fourth dejected local added: "Another shop in Shirley gone. It’s been there since I was little. Shirley has little to offer anymore."

The closure comes during a tough time for the fashion retailer which has already shut a number of stores this year.

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Most recently, it pulled down the shutters on its branch in the Maybird Shopping Park, Stratford-upon-Avon, on October 28.

It also closed one of its Worcestershire stores for good on September 9 and another in Beverley, East Yorkshire, the day before.

The retailer shut up shop in Slough and Windsor on September 5 and pulled down the shutters on its store in the Cornmarket, Lancaster, on September 2.

Meanwhile, its shop in the Crossgates Shopping Centre, Leeds, closed to customers at the end of August.

It shut six branches in January and February this year too.

However, it is not all doom and gloom for the retailer.

The Fosse Park Shopping Park branch in Leicestershire pulled down its shutters in the summer to make way for a bigger venue.

New Look has also opened stores in Grimsby and Leicester in recent weeks too.

It said it has plans to open more stores in 2023, though it hasn't confirmed how many and where in the UK they will be.

The fortunes of New Look have been reflected in the situation with many high street retailers who have taken a battering as shoppers move online for their needs.

Shops including Poundland and Homebase are among those pulling down the shutter on locations for the final time.

The cost of living crisis, high inflation and energy costs are all taking their toll on retailers.

Many shoppers do not have extra cash to spend on anything other than household bills and essential items.

Rising fuel costs and expensive parking also mean that it is also often cheaper and easier for people to get what they need online.

Figures from the British Retail Consortium (BRC) this summer found the UK had lost 6,000 stores over a five-year period.

Meanwhile some retailers are closing some shops to open bigger and better ones nearby, so it's not all bad news for shoppers.

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A number of other companies have fallen into administration this year too, including Paperchase and M&Co.

But it's not all bad news as some retailers have been expanding their number of stores, including B&M, Poundland and One Beyond.

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