CLOSING dates for two budget retailers in Bournemouth have been revealed.
Wilko will be closing two of its Bournemouth branches in the coming days after administrators failed to find a rescue deal for the 400 sites across the UK.
The Winton store in Wimborne Road will be closing on Sunday, September 24 while the Sovereign Shopping Centre Wilko will close next Thursday.
Inside, the two shops have been stripped almost bare of all stock. Empty shelves form the aisles where people have grabbed a discounted bargain.
The latest round of closures will leave just one more Wilko left in Dorset, in Poole’s The Dolphin.
Ferndown’s Wilko, in Victoria Road, closed last weekend, with residents fearing this would create a “ghost town” as the Nightjar Wetherspoon pub next door is set to close this weekend.
Last week, rival budget retailer The Range agreed to buy Wilko’s brand, website and intellectual property.
Administrators PwC, which was hired to oversee Wilko’s insolvency last month, said it expects online operations to recommence once Wilko’s store closure ends in early October.
The deal, for an undisclosed sum, will also see 36 workers from Wilko’s digital team transfer over to the Range.
Chris Dawson, founder and chairman of The Range said: “We will drive it forward as fast as we can as we expand the entire business from our continuing store opening programme to our new 1.2 million square foot distribution centre that is being constructed in the south of England.”
Jane Steer, joint administrator, said: “Since our appointment, the feedback from customers and wider stakeholders during this challenging period has reinforced the fact that Wilko remains a much loved and trusted brand within the UK.
“This sale to The Range will ensure that the Wilko name lives on under their ownership and we wish The Range every success.”
Labour had accused the Government of “giving up on retail" folowing Wilko’s collapse.
Shadow business secretary Jonathan Reynolds said its loss was a “significant blow to the nation’s high streets”, and warned the Government’s response did not “match the scale” of the problems facing town and city centres.
Business minister Kevin Hollinrake insisted high street shopping is “reshaping itself”.
He said: “I don’t accept his premise the high street is dead, not at all.
“It is reshaping itself and while it does so of course we are very determined to help it, such as with the £13.6 billion of rates relief over the next five years.”