Department store Jenners to close with loss of 200 jobs

Emma O'Neill, PA Scotland
·2 min read

One of the UK’s historic department stores, Jenners in Edinburgh, is to close with a loss of 200 jobs.

The announcement was made after Frasers Group plc failed to reach an agreement with building owners Anders Polvsen to continue the lease on the building.

The House of Fraser department store is expected to cease trading on May 3.

The shop has been a landmark on Princes Street for the last 183 years, previously trading as an independent shop until it was acquired by House of Fraser in 2005.

A spokesman for Frasers said: “Despite the global pandemic, numerous lockdowns and the turbulence caused for British retail, the landlord hasn’t been able to work mutually on a fair agreement, therefore, resulting in the loss of 200 jobs and a vacant site for the foreseeable future with no immediate plans.

“Our commitment to our Frasers strategy remains but landlords and retailers need to work together in a fair manner, especially when all stores are closed.

“We would like to take this opportunity to thank our Jenners staff for their hard work and dedication.”

Anders Krogh Vogdrup, director at Bestsellers, the company owned by Anders Polvsen, said: “We can confirm that Frasers Group has notified us that they will be exercising their break option, and so will be leaving the Jenners building.

“We have endeavoured to work with tenants during the pandemic and resulting lockdowns; offering rent-free periods, deferrals and payment plans, and encouraging our tenants to utilise Government-funded schemes to save costs and protect jobs.

“Despite the substantial rent reduction already granted to Frasers and rent-free periods to cover all lockdowns, Frasers has made the decision that it does not wish to continue in occupation.

“This will see the end of the 16-year association between House of Fraser and this building, but not of the 180 years of Jenners department store.

“We are in talks with retailer operators and are planning a programme of works to ensure that, when safe and able to do so, Jenners will reopen.

“Our primary goal is to see the department store returned it to its former glory; Jenners of Edinburgh is an institution and, despite the changing face of retail, it is our aspiration that Jenners will continue to be a retail store for as long as we are its stewards.”