MARKS and Spencer will close its Grantham doors for the final time today (Jan 6), telling shoppers to head for Newark.
Despite more than 800 loyal shoppers asking for M&S to stay, bosses went ahead with the closure anyway, saying the Grantham store is “not commercially viable”.
Bijal Ladva, chairman of Grantham Business Club, believes there are lessons to be learned from the closure, saying the key to keeping big businesses in Grantham and attracting more is for people to shop locally.
He said: “We are going to miss Marks and Spencer because a town like Grantham needs brands like that to attract shoppers but we also have a lot of independent retailers doing a fantastic job and we shouldn’t forget about them.
“Just because we have lost Marks and Spencer and Burtons does not mean we are going to lose the High Street. People just need to make a choice of whether to shop locally or elsewhere.
“I would encourage people to shop locally as it is the only way to attract new businesses and keep bigger high street shops.
“If people don’t shop locally then not just bigger business but smaller businesses will leave.”
Mr Ladva said he understood Marks and Spencer’s decision to close its Grantham store.
He said: “These businesses make these decisions on paper. They don’t think of the town itself, they just think about their bottom line.”
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