Hardware store in Backwell to close
- Credit: Archant
A family-run business in Backwell is closing as it cannot compete with the internet.
Chris and Jane Townsend have been running Mica, in Farleigh Road, for 16 years but they can no longer afford to keep the hardware store open.
Chris said: “There isn’t sufficient business here anymore and I can’t sustain it any longer.
“I’d rather not close but I’ve got no choice in the matter.
“We sell lots of bits and pieces but people tend to buy the bigger items on the internet. I think a lot of retailers are in the same boat.
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“We haven’t got a large footfall here and we’re not near any larger stores so we don’t get much passing trade.
“We’ve enjoyed our time here and met some nice people. We will be running the stocks down before closing.”
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Chris and Jane also run a shed re-felting business which they will be continuing with.
Village leaders are now calling for residents to support their village shops.
Parish council chairman Bob Taylor said: “It’s very sad. They are a nice family and their children also worked in the shop.
“He used to employ a lot of youngsters and there aren’t many jobs around so that’s another sad loss.
“Most of the shops in Backwell are struggling. We are asking our residents to support them.”
Geoff Wells from Backwell Residents Association (BRA) added: “BRA represents many villagers who are very sorry the Mica hardware store is closing down.
“With its predecessor Chorleys, it has served Backwell well for several decades, and has been much appreciated.
“It has been invaluable to have a local DIY supply in the village for electrical items, cleaning materials, garden compost and plants and plumbing and decorating materials.
“Backwell, fortunately has a thriving and well defined shopping area, although the retail industry is a tough and ever-changing environment.
“The MICA site is large, and on a busy corner. BRA will watch carefully any application for development, to ensure that our village remains vibrant, and a good place to live.”