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M&Co closing down sale in Dingwall may not be end of the road for High Street store


By Hector MacKenzie

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M & Co in Dingwall.
M & Co in Dingwall.

A CLOSING down sale being staged by a major retailer in Dingwall may not be quite what it seems.

Fashion retailer M&Co, based in the county town's High Street, has closing down sale signs posted prominently in its window, with a number of discounts in store.

That prompted fears it could be the next major retailer to bow out of the High Street following the shock closure last month of the Edinburgh Woollen Mill branch.

It's understood that the chain is keen to keep the store open and is attempting to negotiate a lower rent.

The Dingwall store was one of more than 200 of its sites saved from the axe earlier this year following a financial restructuring.

However, 47 of its other stores and around 380 jobs were scheduled to be lost.

The company, which has had a presence in the town for over 20 years, appointed administrators in April as the coronavirus outbreak forced the closure of most UK retailers for almost four months.

M&Co’s chief executive Andy McGeoch said then it became clear that best way to save most jobs and most stores was to enter administration, with a new company acquiring the assets of the old business,

He said back in August that Covid "has been by far the biggest challenge our family business has faced in almost 60 years".

He said then that local economies rely to a huge degree on their town centres and that too many High Streets had been hit by successive shop closures.

The administration process was set to see the estate reduced from 265 to 218 stores, with around 380 redundancies from a total workforce of over 2600.

Related: Dingwall store saved as others axed

'Heart-breaking' closure is a blow to county town


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