Boots set to close

STAPLE Hill’s branch of Boots is set to close at the beginning of next year.

News that the pharmacy in Staple Hill High Street, opposite the post office, will close in January was revealed only after a customer posted it on social media, where it was confirmed by a member of staff.

When asked by the Voice, Boots declined to comment on the closure, confirm the date or the number of staff affected.

The US-owned retailer has not published a full list of the 300 stores, out of 2,200 across the country, that it plans to close.

A spokesperson instead referred the Voice to a quarterly statement in June, the end of which refers to “the rejuvenation of the store estate”, adding: “over the next year Boots will continue to consolidate a number of stores in close proximity to each other”.

The Voice understands that this means closing stores that are within 2km of other branches.

The company is offering workers at the stores it is closing jobs at other sites, saying that it will “concentrate its team members where they are needed”.

Boots closed its pharmacy at Christchurch Family Medical Centre on North Street in 2020 – the site is now used as a vaccination centre for covid, flu and other jabs.