Politician comments on 'devastating' Wilko closure in Hemel Hempstead
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A politician has called on Dacorum Council to support the employees affected by Wilko’s imminent closure in Hemel Hempstead.
Yesterday (10 September), GMB union confirmed that every Wilko store in the UK was set to close. Among them is the Wilko store in Hemel Hempstead located in the Marlowes Shopping Centre.
Labour's Parliamentary Candidate in Hemel, David Taylor, has called on the council to support the Hertfordshire residents who will be seeking new employment.
He said: "This is devastating news for Wilko staff. Dacorum Council must do everything they can to ensure they get the best advice on how they can apply for other jobs in our town.
“It's also a huge blow to our town centre. It's been a fixture of the Marlowes for nearly two decades and will be sorely missed by the thousands of us who have shopped there over years.
“This didn't happen by accident. It's due to a toxic combination of shareholders greed, with £77m taken out of the business over the last ten years, combined with the Tories mismanagement of our economy - one that no longer works for working people, and has seen the cost of running a business in Britain rise and rise."
The union representing affiliated Wilko workers believes 12,500 jobs are at risk due to the hundreds of closures.
Projections from the body suggest that all stores will be closed by early October.
Since being plunged into administration in August it was hoped that an 11th hour offer from Doug Putman, the HMV owner, might save the company.
Administrators PwC confirmed the closure in a statement yesterday, it reads: "Despite extensive efforts, it has become clear that no significant part of the Wilko operations can be rescued as a going concern.
"We continue to work with potential buyers for different parts of the business and are confident of completing transactions in the coming days."
The BBC reports that other budget retailers are in talks to buy some of the buildings currently occupied by Wilko. But it is believed that any stores reopened would not return under the Wilko brand.