The DIY retailer announced that eight “mini-market” sites will close their doors in the coming weeks as part of a long-term plan to focus on expanding other forms of B and Q shops. While more than 300 stores will remain open across the UK, shoppers in England could lose access to their local branch. Here’s what you need to know about the closures – including whether your nearest store will be affected.
According to the retailer, closures will begin on March 11, 2023, affecting approximately 57 employees across England.
The staff impacted by the decision to close “mini-markets” at Asda sites will be offered alternative roles in nearby stores rather than making widespread employment cuts.
A spokesperson for B and Q said the decision was made after an “intensive review” of the test format.
Strategy director Chris Bargate explained that it will allow the retailer to focus on expanding their smaller high street stores known as B and Q locals.
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While just eight sites will close as a result of the long-term plan for the retailer, it will see the complete closure of every mini-market site currently open.
These include the mini-market sites open in the following Asda stores:
- Sheffield Drakehouse
- Great Bridge
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Strategy director Chris said: “Our test and learn approach is an important part of building our strategy, and our aim is to create consistent, small store format blueprints that can be scaled further across the UK.
“We’re continually listening to our customers and colleagues to take learnings to evolve the shopping experience in these smaller stores. We value the contribution and the commitment from our colleagues at the concession stores.”
In 2020, the DIY retailer joined forces with the popular budget supermarket in repose to changing shopping habits triggered by the coronavirus pandemic.
Small-scale B and Q sites were built into Asda superstores to provide customers with a more diverse range of products all accessible in one shopping trip.
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The collaboration also surfaced online, enabling shoppers to browse the full range of items including paint, hardware and tools with click-and-collect options available.
While Dagenham and Sheffield were the first two sites to open in 2020, followed by Great Bridge and Hartlepool in December 2021, all stores will close in the space of just a few weeks.
As part of the B and Q locals expansion, the retailer has already opened sites in Palmers Green and Camden districts.
These were the first to adopt the name of the local high street status.
Last year, the DIY retailer launched a new online marketplace for shoppers, allowing them to access goods from third-party suppliers in addition to their own products.
Available as both a mobile app and website, the venture is another step for the company to change the way it works to suit the shopping habits of customers.
As of January 25, 2023, B and Q had 309 stores open across the UK, with 257 of them located in England.
Shoppers can find their local branch using the find a store tool on their website.