Gap to shut down all 81 of its UK & Ireland stores

Gap has announced it has acquired the e-commerce startup Drapr which uses 3D technology to allow shoppers to virtually try on clothing.
“We plan to leverage Drapr to help Gap Inc. improve the fit experience for our customers." : Gap.
// Gap to shut down all 81 of its stores in the UK and Ireland by the end of this year
// It will take its business online “in a phased manner” from the end of August through to the end of September
// Gap did not specify how many employees will be affected

Gap has confirmed it will be closing all 81 of its stores in the UK and Ireland by the end of this year.

The fashion retailer said it intended to take its business online “in a phased manner” from the end of August through to the end of September.

It added it would provide “support and transition assistance” to colleagues following the closures, though did not specify how many employees would be affected by the store closures.


Gap has been active in the UK since 1987 and has had stores in the Republic of Ireland since 2006.

There are a total of 81 stores in the UK and Ireland, according to the Gap online store-finder.

Last month speculation emerged that Gap was planning to shut down 19 stores, but today’s announcement confirms that its whole store estate in the two countries will be affected.

The announcement also comes following a strategic review aimed at “finding new, more cost-effective ways to maintain a presence and serve customers in Europe”.

In a statement, Gap said: “In the UK and Europe, we are going to maintain our Gap online business.

“The ecommerce business continues to grow and we want to meet our customers where they are shopping.

“We’re becoming a digital first business and we’re looking for a partner to help drive our online business.

“Due to market dynamics in the United Kingdom and the Republic of Ireland, we shared with our team today that we are proposing to close all company-operated Gap Specialty and Gap Outlet stores in the UK and Republic of Ireland in a phased manner from the end of August through the end of September 2021.

“We are thoughtfully moving through the consultation process with our European team, and we will provide support and transition assistance for our colleagues as we look to wind down stores.”

It comes following a spate of high street closures this year, including brands such as Dorothy Perkins, Wallis and Burton – part of the former Arcadia Group retail empire owned by retail tycoon Sir Philip Green.

More than 200 shops across the brands were forced to close and over 2000 jobs were axed in February.

Food and clothing retailer Marks & Spencer is also set to close more stores after being hit hard by high street lockdowns.

The retailer said in May it was targeting 30 more closures in the next phase of its long-term transformation plan.

It has already closed or relocated 59 stores but said it is accelerating changes to its portfolio of shops following the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic.

with PA Wires

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  1. Sad for the staff but no surprises. Today’s young people would not wear their clothing and my age that were the base age. I haven’t shopped there since at least 2004 and have never been a big fan. They have been in decline years. Canterbury went in 2009.

  2. I wonder if Brexit had anything to do with these closures? It certainly added a layer of complexity. It still has stores in France & Italy.

  3. @Johann the Ireland stores are going and they are in the EU and Italy, France are closing ( currently in consultation but likely to be sold to the Franchisee). It’s nothing to do with Brexit but the fact they failed to keep up with what’s one of the world’s most difficult retail markets for fashion and exacting customers that want more for less.


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