Wyevale to shut down 2 stores amid sale of 3 others

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Wyevale Potters Bar Syon Park Cheltenham Bridgemere
Wyevale announces closure of 2 garden centres in Potters Bar & Syon Park and the sale of 2 other sites in Cheltenham & Bridgemere. (Image: Jonathan Billinger/Commons)
// Wyevale to close down Potters Bar and Syon Park garden centres this autumn, affecting 78 staff
// Sale of three other stores in Cheltenham and Bridgemere also confirmed
// Wyevale’s two Bridgemere stores – a garden centre & nursery – sold to Blue Diamond
// Cheltenham garden centre sold to Webbs Garden Centres

Wyevale has announced the closure of two of its garden centres and the successful sale of three other stores as it continues to slim down its portfolio.

The gardening retailer said the leaseholds of its garden centres at Potters Bar, Hertfordshire, and London’s Syon Park will shut down in autumn.

On the other hand, Wyevale said the sale of three other stores – located in Cheltenham, Gloucestershire, and Bridgemere, Cheshire – are expected to be complete by mid-September.

Webbs Garden Centres’ purchase of Wyevale’s Cheltenham garden centre increases their Midlands-based operation to three stores.

Wyevale’s Bridgemere stores – a garden centre and a nursery – were sold to Blue Diamond.

This increases the footprint for the latter to 37 centres and brings the total number of Wyevale sites bought by Blue Diamond in the past few months to 16.

While the three stores in Cheltanham and Bridgemere will continue to operate as per usual under their owners, Wyevale said staff affected by the closures at Potters Bar and Syon Park were undergoing consultation.

A spokesman told Retail Gazette that a total of 78 staff were affected – 16 at Potter Bar and 62 at Syon Gardens.

“I am disappointed to announce two centre closures,” Wyevale chief operating officer Anthony Jones said.

“Our ambition has always been to find a positive outcome for all centres but unfortunately Potters Bar Garden Centre and Syon Park Garden Centre will close in the autumn.

“I would like to thank all colleagues at these centres and wish them the very best for the future.”

The latest news means Wyevale has now dwindled its near-150 store estate down to 32 garden centres plus six centres trading under license.

It first announced plans to offload stores last year in May, after a huge investment scheme saw it return to profitability.

“Alan and the Blue Diamond team’s decision to acquire Bridgemere centre and nursery demonstrates the strength and potential of this historic garden centre,” Jones said.

“I am also delighted Cheltenham will be under new ownership with the respected garden centre operator Webbs.

“I would like to thank all of our colleagues at these centres for their skills and hard work and wish them the very best under the new ownership.”

Blue Diamond managing director Alan Roper said: “As a horticulturalist, I am personally so pleased to be acquiring Bridgemere centre and nursery, which I have known since the 1980s.

“I look forward to focusing on its original virtues and to working with our new colleagues at the centre.”

Webbs chairman Edward Webb said: “Cheltenham will be our third centre and is the perfect fit, giving us a very natural extension to our existing and long-established customer base.

“We look forward to welcoming the team on board and continuing to develop Cheltenham into a store that embraces the local community.”

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7 COMMENTS

  1. Syon Park is also the head office, can’t see them relocating it so I would expect more centres to be gone by the time it’s closure comes if not all of the remaining ones closing by then.

  2. Sparkey,

    Very sorry to see the Syon Park store is closing. Living in South West London it was always nice to visit the park and garden center. Being the head office the restaurant was excellent. Always a good menu. The garden center was also well stocked.
    Sorry to see it go.

    Sparkey

    Please do not reveal my name or email address. Only use Sparkey.

  3. Also sad to hear about the Wyevale at Syon Park. It’s not the only Wyevale in the area and perhaps part of its demise can be blamed on the fact it’s now fairly hard to access the site down a single, difficult and narrow (due to parked cars) and humped road, now that the through road to other parts of Isleworth has been closed off for a year or two. I expect that’s made it less profitable, and in my opinion it hasn’t been run well for a while now either. Perhaps the owner of the estate would like to develop it for his wedding business which may well be more lucrative than this garden centre too, but I know a lot of people who’ll be sad to see it go as it’s been on this site a long time. At least there’s another Wyevale at Osterley.

  4. I worked at Syon Park garden centre at the start of its existence and in those days it was considered that the Duke of Northumberland had a duty to provide for the local population in terms of leisure activities. What is going to replace the Garden Centre to provide leisure activities?

  5. I will also deeply miss Syon Park Garden centre. I would like to know the reason for closure and when was the decision made as I only heard about it this week with the announcement of a 50% closing down sale. Is it the Duke of Northumberlands decision or Wyevales?

  6. At no point anywhere have Wyevale said WHY their business is imploding. Comments like “huge investment saw return to profitability,” fly in the face of 90% of it’s business being sold off. I know my local one (Potter’s Bar) has been appallingly run for ages now, and they’re still advertising that it’s open for business on their website which is disingenuous because I visited it today not knowing it was closing (they haven’t thought to tell me even though I’m on their mailing list) and the place is practically empty. But on reflection, they’ve obviously got a massive issue with honesty because they’re website describes the PB centre as “7 acres of beautifully landscaped land” which is utter tripe as most of it is full of rubbish, overgrown and derelict. I just don’t get why corporates like this can’t just be more straight-lying and pretending does more reputational harm than being straight with your customers about times being tough ever would.

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