Weston-super-Mare 'ideal' for Primark after BHS shuts its doors

PUBLISHED: 13:00 18 August 2016

What would you like to replace BHS in Weston High Street?

What would you like to replace BHS in Weston High Street?

Archant

More than two thirds of Weston's shoppers want Primark to open a store in the High Street after the closure of BHS, a Mercury survey has found - and a town centre boss thinks Weston is the 'ideal' location for the clothing giants.

BHS closed its Weston branch on July 30, leaving a vacant retail unit in the centre of the High Street, and the building’s owners – who are believed to be separate to BHS – are yet to confirm plans for its future.

The Mercury polled online users, asking what they would like to fill the vacant space left by the recently-liquidated department store in an open survey.

Some 90 per cent of respondents said they want a clothing shop to replace BHS, while 69 per cent of the 268 respondents directly cited Primark as the brand they want to open for business in the High Street.

The response on social media, too, indicated an overwhelming desire from Weston’s shoppers for the high-street clothing brand to open a store in the town.

Primark has stores in Bristol and Taunton, but town centre manager Steve Townsend believes Weston should have a branch too. He said: “The site and the demographic of Weston, plus the millions of visitors we get, would be ideal for them [Primark].

“I’d love for them to consider Weston, but based on the dialogue we’ve had in the past we want to know why we might not fit their criteria.”

Mr Townsend thinks Weston’s shoppers should directly attempt to persuade the chain. He said: “I would encourage people to put pressure on them and say ‘we as residents want Primark’.”

But Primark could not be drawn on the speculation. A spokesman told the Mercury: “We are grateful for this support. We do not comment on future plans, but the UK market is very important to us.

“We remain determined to offer the best value on the high street.”

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