Waterstone's closes first ever branch

The first ever Waterstone's branch, which opened in 1982 in west London, will close on Christmas Eve after the retailer decided not to extend the lease on the Old Brompton Road property when it expires on 24th December.

The company said that it intended to relocate the shop's 12 staff to other central London branches. "It is always sad to close a store, but this closure is especially poignant as it was the first branch opened back in 1982," said Waterstone's m.d. Gerry Johnson.

"From that one store we have grown Waterstone's into a 320-plus store company with over 45,00 employees and shops all over the country and further afield. I would like to pay tribute to the current team and to everyone who has worked in the store since its opening, and of course to the countless customers who have enjoyed shopping there over the years."

Waterstone's has been implementing plans to cut 10% of its floor space over three years. It has another branch nearby on Kings Road in Kensington.