Major update on future of more Wilko stores as first to reopen in DAYS – and fans say 'it's good news for a change' | The Sun

A MAJOR update has been issued on the future of Wilko stores and shoppers say "it's good news for a change".

It comes after the brand's new owner announced that the chain would return to the high street in three locations before Christmas.

Wilko's name and intellectual property was bought by rival discounter The Range earlier in the summer.

CDS Superstores, which trades as The Range and Wilko, revealed last month that it will be relaunching the chain across Britain's high streets.

The three newly announced locations, and their opening dates, are as follows:

  • Plymouth, which opens at Unit A, Armada Centre, Mayflower Street, Plymouth, PL1 1QL on December 1
  • Exeter, which opens at Unit 100, Guildhall Shopping Centre, Exeter, EX4 3HP on December 1
  • Luton, which opens at 141/147 Arndale Centre, Luton, LU1 2TN on December 8

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The Range founder, Chris Dawson and his chief executive Alex Simpkin visited the Plymouth Wilko store, ahead of its December 1 opening alongside stores in Exeter.

Both gave a major update on their plans for Wilko and Chris Dawson said up to 300 stores could reopen on Britain's high streets.

Speaking to PlymouthLive, Alex Simpkin said: "There are about 50 Wilkos openings in addition to these three.”

Chris Dawson said: "Those are with the lawyers – but it will be 300, more or less where there were, in most cases, ex-Wilko stores.

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"Wilko had 406 stores, we don't see that, our intelligence says we will do just under 300, I don’t know how long that will take."

Reacting to Chris Dawson's comments on Facebook one Wilko fan said: "Great news. Good luck to him. It means more jobs…"

Another said: "I am so glad to see Plymouth Wilko is reopening on December 1.

"Fingers crossed the current staff who worked there will get their jobs back after they went through a tough time with losing their jobs."

"Fantastic news well done to you," said a third shopper.

The Sun previously revealed that Wilko stores in the following three locations could open once again:

  • Llewellyn Walk, Llywelyn Road, Cwmbran, South Wales
  • Central Walk, Hucknall, Nottingham
  • The Luton Arndale Centre, Luton, Bedfordshire (now confirmed)

Research by this publication showed that The Range careers website was hiring dozens of roles in the three locations above at undisclosed addresses.

Store manager and assistant store manager roles and a handful of retail assistant jobs were up for grabs.

The job descriptions didn't specify whether the roles are for stores operated by The Range or Wilko.

However, numerous roles have already become available for the Wilko stores which were first confirmed to open in Exeter and Plymouth – all of which were listed on The Range's careers website.

The Range already operates stores in Nottingham and Bedfordshire and could take advantage of the retail space offered by closed Wilko stores to aid its high street comeback.

According to The Range's own store opening schedule, it has no plans to open stores in these locations under its own brand in the coming months.

At the time a source at CDS Superstores didn't deny that Wilko shops in Cwmbran, Hucknall and Luton could reopen. returned in October under The Range's ownership and Wilko-branded items are being stocked in The Range stores.

Wilko tumbled into administration in August before a flurry of potential buyers expressed an interest.

But sadly, a buyer for the whole business couldn't be found and it then announced all 400 shops would close by October.

Wilko's last remaining sites shut for good on Sunday, October 8.

But rivals stepped in to buy a handful of stores.

Among those was Poundland, which purchased 71 Wilko stores.#

B&M also agreed to buy up to 51 locations in a £13million deal.

These locations haven't been announced yet, but will reopen as B&M shops.

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