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M&S is planning to close one of its York stores.

The retail giant announced today (Thursday, April 20) that it is consulting with colleagues on the proposed closure of its Simply Food store at Monks Cross in York.

If the proposal goes ahead all 30 colleagues would be guaranteed redeployment at nearby stores.

The announcement is part of wider proposals to close six stores across the UK. If the proposal goes ahead, the store would close in June and the majority of colleagues would move to the large clothing, home and food store at Vangarde Retail Park just a few hundred metres away.

There would also be the possibility of staff moving to the city centre branch on Parliament Street and the Designer Outlet store.

Not taken lightly

The deli counter in the M&S Vangarde store. Photograph: Andrew Parish / Marks and Spencer

Alison Grainger, head of M&S’ north division, said:

Proposing to close M&S Monks Cross Simply Food is not a decision we have taken lightly.

It is now important that we work closely with our colleagues on the consultation and it is our intention that nobody would leave M&S.

We are committed to delivering the very best of M&S to our customers in York. We have three other popular stores in the city, including our Vangarde store which is only 500 metres from the Monks Cross store.

The proposed closure of Monks Cross Simply Food is part of M&S’s five-year UK store estate programme announced in November after a full review of its store portfolio.

Other closures planned

The exterior of the Vangarde store. Photograph: YorkMix

The plans are designed to change the M&S store estate to better meet customer needs and include opening 200 new food-only stores and selling clothing and home from 60 fewer locations.

The result will be more, conveniently located M&S stores but fewer clothing and home stores that offer customers a wider range.

In addition to Monks Cross Simply Food, M&S has also proposed the closure of Slough, Portsmouth, Warrington, Wokingham and Worksop Simply Food stores.

‘Carefully considered with our colleagues’

M&S boss Steve Rowe. Photograph: Adrian Brooks / Marks and Spencer

Chief executive of Marks & Spencer Steve Rowe said the moves were to reflect changing shopping habits are changing.

As a result “there will be more M&S colleagues working in an increased number of convenient locations, serving more customers,” he said.

“It also means that we will open new stores, some will reduce in size, some will move, some will close and others will convert to food-only.

“Each proposal we make will be very carefully considered with our colleagues and customers firmly front of mind.

“It is our intention that nobody leaves M&S and we will work as hard as possible to ensure that we can deliver against this promise.”

M&S currently has 959 UK stores – 304 full line stores, 615 food-only stores and 40 outlets.