John Lewis abandons Brighton store plans

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John Lewis has binned plans to open a new store in Brighton due to the “extent of demolition and rebuilding required” to do so.

The news comes after the department store chain had purchased a freehold on Brighton’s North Street in 2015 and earmarked it for a new store.

However, the idea of a new store has now been abandoned and health retailer Boots will open there instead.

A John Lewis spokeswoman said: “We are disappointed to announce that we have decided not to progress our plans to open a John Lewis shop on North Street in Brighton.

READ MORE: Retail Gazette Loves: John Lewis’ “National Treasures” campaign

“We acquired the site positive that we could build a John Lewis shop, but having explored all options, we cannot deliver a shop on this site with the extent of demolition and rebuilding required.”

In March, John Lewis managing director Paula Nickolds confirmed the retailer would open fewer stores over the coming years compared to usual expansion rate in previous years.

New stores in Oxford, Cheltanham and Westfield White City in west London are still on the cards.

“We have three shops in the pipeline and we’re really excited about those shops. But looking forwards we will probably open fewer shops than we have done in the past,” she said.

The retailer also recently unveiled details about the significant revamp of its Edinburgh store at St James Centre.

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