Marks & Spencer names date for opening of new Liverpool store which is 70% smaller than its existing outlet – and the retailer is not saying what this means for headcount and product ranges. Tony McDonough reports
Retail giant Marks & Spencer will open its new Liverpool store on Tuesday, August 15 – and it will be 70% smaller than the existing outlet in Church Street.
M&S has agreed a deal with Liverpool ONE owner Grosvenor to take a 100,000 sq ft space in the former Debenhams store on the corner of Lord Street and South John Street. However, the actual trading space of the new store is just 70,000 sq ft.
Its current home is the Grade II-listed Compton House in Church Street. This offers around 250,000 sq ft of trading space and a further 100,000 sq ft of storage and admin space.
M&S first announced the move in May 2022. Debenhams vacated the store in May 2021 after the collapse of the famous chain. M&S will occupy two floors of the building with the £10m Gravity entertainment venue occupying the rest of the space.
This week M&S said the new store would offer clothing, home and beauty departments as well as a market-style food hall and bakery. There will also be a dedicated M&S wine shop.
However, with the store 180,000 sq ft smaller it begs the question as to staffing levels and the size of product ranges at the new outlet. LBN has asked M&S for clarification on this but it has yet to respond.
Store manager, Kirsty Williams, who has worked at M&S for 10 years, said this week: “We are really excited to announce that the new M&S Liverpool One store will open on Tuesday, August 15.
“I can’t wait to welcome our local customers inside to visit the store next month and see it all for themselves.”
The move to Liverpool ONE raises questions about what will happen to Compton House in Church Street which LBN understands is owned by Liverpool City Council.
The building was one of the first purpose-built department stores in Europe. For a short period the building was also used as a hotel that catered mainly for American guests.
It will be one of two prominent buildings to become vacant in the space of a few weeks. Earlier this week it was revealed that The Vintage Store, which opened just over a year ago in the former Topshop premises, was also set to close its doors.