By Tania Chakraborti
The Silver Street branch of Pret A Manger has announced its upcoming closure this month.
The chain revealed on Twitter: “Sadly, we’re afraid our shop in Durham will be closing on Thursday 29th March. We’ve really enjoyed our time in the city and we’d like to thank all our customers for their support!”
Roberta Blackman-Woods, MP for City of Durham stated of the closure:
“The news that Pret A Manger will be closing its store in Durham is yet another blow to the residents in the city and surrounding villages. Following on from the announcement of the closure of Marks and Spencer’s, this will leave Durham City and Silver Street in particular, ”
“Durham should be the key location for retail and leisure in the county, but unfortunately a number of businesses are leaving the city centre. I have already met with senior council officers to discuss the importance of ensuring Durham remains an attractive proposition not only for businesses, but for residents, tourists and visitors alike.
“I will be raising these issues at the next Durham City Board meeting, and will continue to press the local authority to do everything it can to encourage retailers to remain in Durham and to attract new businesses to the city.”
Student reactions to Pret A Manger’s announcement have been mixed.
Ashleigh Boyce, a second-year student from Collingwood, stated; “I’m not too fussed about the news, honestly I’ve never bought anything from there. Personally, it’s not my kind of food and is way too overpriced for what you get.”
Ella Capel-Smith a third-year Cuths student commented that “it seems to be indicative of the state of the Durham high street that even the big chains are struggling to survive.”
Second-year Hild Bede student Calum Connolly said he’s “not that bothered, I like Pret in London but there’s no need for it in Durham with Starbucks and multiple independent coffee houses.”
The news follows the recent announcement of the closure of Durham’s Marks and Spencer, also on Silver Street, on Saturday 7th April 2018. M&S confirmed that all 48 of its employees would not lose their jobs and would instead continue employment in other branches of the store.
The closure is due to M&S’s programme to modernise their UK store estate to adapt to the altering needs of their customers.
Photograph: Michael Erhardsson via Flickr