DE Shoes closure means a loss of 160 jobs

24 April 2013 Last updated at 10:04

More than 160 job losses after shoe chain DE Shoes closes

More than 160 people are to lose their jobs after a 146-year-old Dundee-based shoe retail chain failed to find a buyer for its business.

William Smith Ltd is to shut 25 shops, which trade as DE Shoes and Foot Factory, after attempts to avoid closure proved unsuccessful.

The firm said it had been a victim of “difficult economic times”.

Staff were given their notice after a consultation concerning the future of the company finished on Friday.

Managing director Robert Sinclair said no viable alternatives to the closure of the business had been identified and they had not been able to sell the business as a going concern.

He said: “The sale of five stores in March, saving almost a quarter of retail jobs, was, however, a positive achievement and there continues to be some interest in a small number of the remaining stores as going concerns.”
Sad decision

Notice has now been given to the company’s 162 staff and a closing down closing down sale at the 25 branches of DE Shoes and Foot Factory still in the company’s ownership will begin on Wednesday.

Mr Sinclair added: “I am immensely sad that in the company’s 146th year it has proved necessary to decide to wind it up.

“The last months have been incredibly difficult for everyone but I have been grateful for the ongoing support from members of the public who do not want to see their local shoe shop close.

“Unfortunately shopping habits have shown a move away from local High Streets and in these difficult economic times even loyal customers have had to cut back on their footwear purchases.”

The branches being closed are:

DE Shoes – Stranraer
DE Shoes – Newton
DE Shoes – Dumfries
DE Shoes – Castle Douglas
DE Shoes – Thurso
DE Shoes – Wick
DE Shoes – Invergordon
DE Shoes – Dingwall
DE Shoes – Inverness High Street
DE Shoes – Nairn
DE Shoes – Forres
DE Shoes – Buckie
DE Shoes – Keith
DE Shoes – Banff
DE Shoes – Fort William
DE Shoes – Oban
DE Shoes – Blairgowrie
DE Shoes – Crieff
DE Shoes – Cupar
DE Shoes – St.Andrews
DE Shoes – Cowdenbeath
DE Shoes Express Inverness
Foot Factory – Aberdeen
Foot Factory – Lochee, Dundee
Foot Factory – Broughty Ferry, Dundee

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