The Panasonic store at Bradley Stoke’s Willow Brook shopping centre has ceased trading in mysterious circumstances.
The consumer electronics shop located near the Town Square entrance to the mall closed on Sunday for what was advertised as a two-day period of “stock taking and refurbishment” but has failed to re-open this week.
Investigations by The Journal have revealed that references to the Bradley Stoke store and another branch in Clifton have been removed from the website of parent company Pana Stores (South West). The firm continues to trade from it four other stores in Dorchester, Exeter, Newton Abbot and Salisbury.
Twitter accounts operated by the company for its Bradley Stoke and Clifton outlets have also been shut down.
The Journal has heard that staff who turned up to work at the Bradley Stoke branch on Monday morning were told the store would be not be re-opening.
A customer service representative reached via a telephone number on the Pana Stores website confirmed that the Bradley Stoke store would not be re-opening but a request for a statement from the company’s head office has gone unanswered.
Management at the Willow Brook Centre appeared to be in the dark over what was happening with the Panasonic store. A source at the centre said they were “unavailable to comment”.
The Journal can reveal that in February last year, the lease on the Panasonic unit was marketed by property agents McArthur Wilson. Promotional literature advertising the opportunity was marked “Confidential Disposal – Staff Unaware”.
Image: Statement on property agent’s literature, February 2012.
Photo: Notice on the window of the Panasonic store this week.
Two other stores have ceased trading at the Willow Brook Centre over the last twelve months but both units have since been re-let. The Peacocks clothing store closed in February 2012 but was replaced by Poundworld in June 2012. The Simpson’s fish & chip shop closed in May 2012, to be replaced by Domino’s Pizza in October 2012.
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