Arcadia Group stores still open for business

ARCADIA GROUP stores in Guernsey face an uncertain future but they are still open for business.

Dorothy Perkins and fellow Arcadia Group store Burton were still busy with customers yesterday with Guernsey Retail group chairman Jonathan Creasey urging islanders to be wary of thinking the collapse into administration of the parent company spelt the end for the shops. (Picture by Sophie Rabey, 28960179)
Dorothy Perkins and fellow Arcadia Group store Burton were still busy with customers yesterday with Guernsey Retail group chairman Jonathan Creasey urging islanders to be wary of thinking the collapse into administration of the parent company spelt the end for the shops. (Picture by Sophie Rabey, 28960179)

Burton and Dorothy Perkins staff are carrying on as normal, despite the group going into administration on Monday.

Guernsey Retail Group chairman Jonathan Creasey was greeted by smiling staff when he visited the busy shops yesterday.

‘The business may have gone into administration, but at the moment they’re both still trading,’ said Mr Creasey.

‘It can’t be easy for staff to have the public talking about this, it is their livelihoods, but they are busy with customers and staff are still smiling.'

Stock is replenishing ahead of Christmas so it is business as usual.

‘Burton received a huge delivery, which is great news. They have good stock and lots to offer. I would caution against talking as though they are gone already.’

Unlike the group’s stores elsewhere, Guernsey’s have continued at a usual pace since summer when lockdown restrictions eased.

‘Unfortunately, we don’t have the data in Guernsey, but [in terms of high street availability] I feel we are not worse off than we were 12 months ago.’

Plenty of new businesses have sprung up in town this year, said Mr Creasey.

‘Let’s not focus on ones which are closed, but rather the ones that are presently open.’

Empty shop windows still feature across Town, which, he said, might be a window of opportunity.

‘There is opportunity for new retailers to move over or move up into premises they previously couldn’t. They might be able to get a better deal or a better location now than they could’ve done previously.’

Borders reopening may strengthen this chance to find a balance between securing bigger brand names while retaining local businesses.

‘This year has proven that Guernsey has held its own and shows that to businesses elsewhere and UK chains. People often say they love local and independent nature of our town, so having big businesses in Town isn’t necessarily the ideal solution.’

Buyers are being sought to reinvest in Arcadia Group to keep some of its eight household named brands afloat.

‘Either way, the focus should be on the fact that Burton and Dorothy Perkins are still open, and have a really good chance to stay open,’ said Mr Creasey.

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