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Old 02-28-2014, 11:20 AM
Join Date: Nov 2012
Posts: 628
Default King Street

An interesting development on the King Street story. The owner of T.E.Roberts has announced this week that the store is to close on King Street. Amongst the contributing factors owner Will Pennington states that "finally the King Street redevelopment from summer 2013 has finished us off, it had a severe impact on business".

Clearly this is not the only factor in play, but it is a tragedy nevertheless.

I enjoyed a similar experience between 2002 and 2005 with the redevelopment of the Bus Station. Owning 'Phase One Records' at the time, we went from our record year of takings (2001-2) to our lowest point during the redevlopment. There were other factors in play in our case as well, but when your turnover dropped by 50% the week the work started and plummeted thereafter, the writing was on the wall.

Redevelopments are necessary things but the longer they go on and the more they disrupt customer flow, the harder it all gets. Back in that redevelopment time we were spun a line about an impending state of the art shopping development in the King Street area and I foolishly hung on when sanity dictated pulling out. The redevelopment led me to decisions that ultimately cost me my business, forced me to take my pensions out and forced me to sell my house.

I trust that things are easier for those who businesses who have weathered the storm of redevelopment in the last year

Last edited by Alunh; 02-28-2014 at 11:22 AM.
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Old 02-28-2014, 11:39 AM
Join Date: Sep 2012
Posts: 627
Default Re: King Street

When I worked at a shop on Queen Street the same thing happened to us. Firstly there was the Vegetable Market fiasco with the demolition, then the facade had scaffolding all around it, then a substantial part of the road had to be closed off as that became unsafe so all in all it went on for years. Then most of the side facing Queen Street had empty shops for a long time, I am sorry for TE Roberts. They have been there for years. Another local business gone.
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Old 02-28-2014, 03:54 PM'er
Join Date: Apr 2013
Posts: 203
Default Re: King Street

It's a shame to see another Wrexham business leave the High Street.

Although a planning application went in last month to convert the store into office space for Unite the Union.

Proposals To Convert Electrical Store To Office Space |
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Old 02-28-2014, 08:50 PM
Join Date: Feb 2014
Posts: 537
Default Re: King Street

Have you noticed that the repair people have been out already -- outside the CoOp and the Games Shop. New tarmac, anti skid surface and new yellow lines - less than three months after the work was completed - even without snow and frost breaking up the surface.
I wonder who has paid -- contract retention money or ratepayers..
If this is three months in what will it be like three years when all retention money etc has gone .
What a disgrace that shows the poor workmanship-- wonder when the pavements will start lifting they are already starting to be uneven .
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Old 03-01-2014, 07:31 AM
Join Date: Oct 2012
Posts: 131
Default Re: King Street

While I agree with many of the comments on this thread there are some that I believe are stretching things a bit far....

I have shopped a TE Roberts in the past but not for the last 15 years, I stopped going there when they were far more expensive than the internet and more expensive than other large retailers in the town, like Currys, Dixons, Comet.

Ok, so TE Roberts did offer a different type of service to the main stream retailers, but when you could purchase the same item across town for 100 less or wait a few days and get it off the internet for 200 less then it was only a matter of time sadly.

While I am all for giving the council a good kicking when appropriate, I feel blaming the re development for TE Roberts closure is unfair, why? If you take a look at then you will see the sales brochure is from August 2012.

On the up side when Unite move into the building as well as the regular staff the union will also hold training courses for Shop Stewards etc. from across the north west, this will bring people into the Wrexham area and some will travel by rail and bus. So it's not all bad news!
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Last edited by Steve; 03-01-2014 at 07:34 AM.
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Old 03-01-2014, 11:08 AM
Join Date: Nov 2012
Posts: 628
Default Re: King Street

Hi Steve

I don't think that anyone above would pretend that the redevelopment of King Street was the sole reason for the demise of any business Steve. This would be really myopic. Equally, when a business is existing at the margins of survival (which believe me many are), a redevelopment carried out in a certain way can be the final straw.

I can't comment on the specifics of any other business but I fully remember that people would say to me your business is this that and the other. I heard remarks like "you're dearer than the internet", "people are downloading", "HMV must be causing you a problem" and so on. All of these remarks came from people who actually knew nothing about my trade, my turnover and my profitability.

When problems come along, all businesses that survive adjust, refocus, reinvent, diversify and so on. Whether T.E.Roberts did that I don't know. What is a fact, however, is that if people don't come to you because they are put off by the ongoing work, you have no chance.

Oddly, when I pulled the plug in King Street, it did not prevent me from relocating somewhere else and happily trading from that point onwards. Equally, if Bank Street was to be redeveloped and the work became a saga I have no doubt that my business could be cripppled
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Old 03-02-2014, 09:21 PM
Join Date: Feb 2014
Posts: 537
Default Re: King Street

The key point about King Street is 1.2 million and nothing has occurred to develop the footfall -- the one essential for any retail business is not the colour of the pavements.
How much longer will all the 9 Estate Agents offices remain open with more and more house hunting being done on the internet- will these be the next set of closures- the car parts shop has been empty for nearly three years, Fat Cat 12 months.
In many towns a bus station is a retail hub yet in Wrexham that is far from reality.
A question to be asked of the Council is why did they not keep the Fat Cat and shops as there was an income opportunity and flexibility- now all that is likely to happen is the rent ion the open shops will increase to cover the cost of the empty units which in turn will price them out of the Bus Station.
It would be interesting to know if the Council are paying for the road repairs and new lines or if it is the contractor 'snagging'.
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Old 03-02-2014, 09:56 PM
Join Date: May 2012
Posts: 159
Default Re: King Street

I can certainly understand wanting to improve the visual impact of a key transport link (I wish Pen Y Bryn would receive an overhaul too) but I agree, spending over 1m on material improvements you'd expect some follow up efforts to assist landlords and businesses to grow the area.. Was it expected that the new paving would trigger an influx of prospective retailers and restauranteurs?

I can't say that the works put me off visiting however as it's probably been 2-3 years since I've walked down King Street.. Without needing an estate agent or solicitors why would I?
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Old 03-03-2014, 08:21 PM
Join Date: Feb 2014
Posts: 537
Default Re: King Street

Less than 200k for business and they all needed to have 50% to match at a time when they are already struggling -- was this such a good deal.
Anyone heard what the Council are going to do with their 12million Vibrant and Viable funding-- no doubt King Street waste on a far bigger scale!!
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Old 03-03-2014, 10:45 PM
Join Date: Nov 2012
Posts: 628
Default Re: King Street

The quest for profit will always bring in private sector investment- hence Eagles Meadow. Run down areas like Pen y bryn go that way because there is a sense that there will be no return- hence no investment. I was in Pen y bryn in 1977-81 and the place was full of businesses. A few decades later and an inner ring road and we are where we are.

The growth of the Town, the Internet and the development of out of town developments have made it almost impossible to trade profitably (especially given the recession). This has led to rents tumbling (which is good). Unfortunately, rising rates set against the factors outlined means that business uptakes have been deterred by sheer cost. This has led rents to fall even more (which is good).

Unfortunately, falling rents = falling investment = developing dilapidation. Sad to see that those who should know better prefer to spend public money so unwisely when a more targeted approach would be to drop the Rates
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