SHOPPERS may have to travel further to buy CDs and books next year as the HMV Group announced plans to close 60 stores across the UK and Ireland within the next 12 months.
With its ‘peak trading period significantly undermined by severe weather’, sales were down more than 10 per cent in the 10 weeks leading up to New Year, compared with the same period the previous year.
Around 60 HMV stores face closure, while the group, which also owns Waterstone’s, announced that about 20 of its book shops would also close.
No details have been released about the locations of the affected stores but areas with a high concentration of stores are in the most danger.
HMV spokeswoman Helen Smith, said that the company’s strategy was to look at areas where there were multiple stores and close one of them, while transferring staff to other stores in the area.
HMV is trying to reduce its expensive rental costs rather than trying to save money by cutting its work force, she said.
There is currently an HMV store on the arc shopping development in Bury St Edmunds and two Waterstone’s branches, one in the Butter Market and another on the arc.