Waterstones shuts Brentwood store after lease talks fail

Waterstones shuts Brentwood store after lease talks fail

Waterstones is closing its branch in Brentwood, Essex, saying it was unable to renegotiate the lease.

The chain said the small, single-floor high street store would shut but it was “actively” seeking a new premises in the town and, in the meantime, customers were encouraged to use the store in nearby Romford, once coronavirus measures ease.

A spokesperson said: “It is with great regret that we announce the closure of Waterstones Brentwood. We would have preferred to remain but unfortunately negotiations to continue our lease have not been successful. Our bookselling team in Brentwood has been proud to serve the community’s reading needs and we are very grateful for the loyal support of our customers over the years.

“Waterstones remains committed to the readers of Brentwood and we are now actively seeking a new bookshop location within the town.”

The store employs two full-time booksellers and one weekend bookseller. Waterstones said it aimed to relocate staff members where possible.

The announcement follows the chain's closure of four stores last year. M.d. James Daunt warned last month that 80 out of 290 Waterstones branches could shut when leases expire unless business rates are reformed.