Marks & Spencer announced in May that 32 stores were to close, amid “increasing cost pressures and consumer uncertainty”.
Marks and Spencer to close Barnsley town center store and move to retail park
In a statement, the retailer said it plans to open 15 new full-line stores over the next three years and 40 new grocery stores.
Relocations of stores are underway, moving from “old multi-storey buildings”, in the city center, to “modern and well-located sites”, a high proportion of which are “on the outskirts of the city”.
When the closure was announced in June, M&S regional manager Matt Graham said the new Peel Retail Park branch near Harborough Hill Road will offer 60 per cent more foodservice space than the current store.
The change has been attributed to changing shopping habits, and the existing store at 7 Queen Street will close once the development is complete, which is expected to be in early 2023.
Plans have now been lodged with Barnsley Council for the new store, which will be made up of two merged units – 3B and 3C, which once housed a Maplin and Poundworld store.
Planning documents say the proposals include a “modest” extension to the rear, as well as storage and that staff only use the mezzanine.
The document adds that Barnsley Council have been “informed of M&S’s proposed move from the town center to the Peel Center at the pre-bid stage.
“In summary, M&S will close its Queen Street store
“There is no longer a need for general merchandise at Barnsley, as discussed at the meeting with Council leaders on June 13.
“However, M&S remains committed to Barnsley and has agreed terms with Peel to open a new grocery store.”
The new store will offer click and collect for clothing and non-food, as well as an “enriched food and drink offer compared to the existing store in the city center”.
The applicants say the development “will bring existing vacant retail units back into active and beneficial use.”
“The proposed store will employ approximately 70 full-time and part-time staff who will be primarily recruited locally.