Poundland places 44 stores into temporary hibernation

Date published: 08 January 2021

Poundland is temporarily closing 44 of its stores – including the one in Rochdale Exchange – due to reduced footfall in this latest lockdown.

The discount retailer is replicating the measures it took during the lockdowns of 2020, by placing 44 of its 800+ stores into temporary hibernation from the end of trading on Saturday 9 January 2021.

In the first 2020 lockdown, Poundland hibernated around 120 stores in March and was able to start reopening them from the end of May.

As it sells items from household cleaning to healthcare, groceries and pet food, Poundland is classed as an essential retailer, so the vast majority of stores – approximately 800 – will remain open.

Austin Cooke, Poundland’s retail director, said: “We learned valuable lessons during the lockdown in March about how buying patterns change as people stick to government advice to stay at home.

“Putting a small number of stores into hibernation helps protect them for the long term and focus our attention on the majority of stores that remain open to serve their neighbourhoods.

“We hope this lockdown is short and we can re-open our hibernating stores as quickly as possible and we remain grateful for the vital support schemes available to us that help protect jobs.”

Where appropriate, employees in hibernating stores will be placed on furlough, protecting those roles for the future. Any furloughed colleagues will retain their benefits and employment status and remain valued members of the team, the retailer says.

Stores that remain open continue to have rigorous health and hygiene measures in place to protect colleagues and customers.

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