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Oops! Tesco’s Gateshead mailout sends customers to Poundland

Tesco Gateshead mailout (13 Apr 2012). Photograph by Graham Soult

Tesco Gateshead mailout (13 Apr 2012)

Ahead of the Gateshead superstore’s closure on 22 April, Tesco has mailed details of its temporary store to local customers – but they may have trouble finding it using the map provided.

While the leaflet gives the correct address for the former Kwik Save premises, the attached map locates the store on … Continue Reading

Carphone confirms closure of its 11 UK Best Buy stores – so what went wrong?

Best Buy, Rotherham (3 Nov 2011). Photograph by Graham Soult

Best Buy, Rotherham (3 Nov 2011)

Carphone Warehouse has this morning confirmed that it will close its 11 big-box Best Buy stores across the UK, subject to employee representative consultation, putting 1,100 jobs at risk.

The first store, in Thurrock, … Continue Reading

From no sprouts to no claims – an unusual use for an old Safeway

Former Safeway, Byker (6 Jun 2011). Photograph by Graham Soult

Former Safeway, Byker (6 Jun 2011)

It’s amazing how a throwaway remark can prompt an entire discussion on something unexpected…

In my January post about the divvying up of Netto’s North East store estate following the chain’s acquisition by Asda, I made passing reference to Birtley’s former Safeway – a store … Continue Reading

Haldanes not ruling out purchase of “great” Netto Birtley store

Netto, Birtley (24 Jan 2011). Photograph by Graham Soult

Netto, Birtley (24 Jan 2011)

When Asda’s sale of 39 surplus Netto stores was announced a couple of weeks ago, I noted that Birtley – a small town close to here, within the Borough of Gateshead – was home to one of the eight remaining Netto stores that Asda is still required to divest by the OFT.

As … Continue Reading

The ongoing mystery of Byker’s (possible) former Woolies

Still not sure if this is an old Woolies or not... (7 Mar 2010). Photograph by Graham Soult

Still not sure if this is an old Woolies or not… (7 Mar 2010)

(UPDATE: Since I wrote this post, it’s been confirmed that the A&S Discount building was indeed Byker’s original Woolworths location.)

Back in January I … Continue Reading

HobbyCraft shines, Borders stumbles

Borders at Retail World, Gateshead. Photograph courtesy of Land Securities

Borders at Retail World, Gateshead. Photograph courtesy of Land Securities

Mixed fortunes in the news today for two specialist retailers that both have a presence at Team Valley Retail World in Gateshead – HobbyCraft and Borders.

Privately-owned HobbyCraft, which describes itself as “the UK’s largest chain of dedicated arts and crafts superstores”, has reported a … Continue Reading

Déjà vu as Poundstretcher sells surplus Woolies-branded stock

Woolworths Worthit logo

Woolworths Worthit logo

Wandering around the variety store Poundstretcher in Hexham yesterday, I was understandably surprised to spot lots of Woolworths-branded products on the shelves, including – among many other things – Worthit DVD players and laundry baskets.

Presumably, Poundstretcher has snapped up surplus warehouse stock that would have been destined for Woolies, had it survived. It struck me as quite ironic, given that Poundstretcher put its weak performance over Christmas down to competition from Woolworths’ clearance sale – selling off … Continue Reading

B & (no need to) Q

B&Q store. Photograph by David Wright

B&Q store. Photograph by David Wright

I was interested to read Retail Week’s comment piece today on the introduction of self-serve checkouts to B&Q, and to note the author’s scepticism over whether such a system really works in the context of a DIY store.

As I commented on the article, self-service checkouts were also in place at B&Q Scotswood (in Newcastle) when I shopped there a week ago. Having never … Continue Reading