Clarks shoe shop will stay in Preston city centre after company rethink

Clarks shoe shop is staying in Preston city centre- for now.

By Catherine Musgrove
Saturday, 9th July 2022, 3:45 pm

The company - one of the best-known shoe brands in the world – announced in late 2020 it was looking to close 50 retail units after an eight per cent drop in pre-Covid sales.

>>>Click here for why Clarks had to remove “sexist” shoes

Preston currently has two Clarks shops - one in Fishergate and one in Deepdale Retail Park.

The Clarks shop in Fishergate, Preston. Image from Google

Although the under-threat locations were never disclosed in 2020, news that the chain's premises at 103a-104 Fishergate have been listed for sale has raised concerns.

The Fishergate property is being marketed as 'Prime shop for sale (subject to vacant possession)'.

Vacant possession means the right of a purchaser to exclusive use of a property on completion of the sale, any previous occupant having moved out.

When asked about the listing, agent Morgan Martin said the situation has recently changed and the premises were no longer being offered with vacant possession. Any new owner would have Clarks as a tenant.

A staff member said: "Clarks were thinking about leaving the premises, but changed their minds and in the last few weeks have renewed their lease."

The premises, built in 1956, offers accommodation over ground and first floor measuring 9,016 square foot.

There are four parking spaces and the property's Rateable Value is £108,000.

Hong Kong-based private equity firm LionRock Capital acquired a 100 million pound majority stake in Clarks late in 2020. It came as the 197-year-old brand received the green light from its creditors to launch a company voluntary arrangement (CVA) which will see its stores switch to turnover-based rents.

Clarks has been contacted for a comment.