Bradley Stoke Panasonic store ceases trading

The Panasonic store in Bradley Stoke. Closed "for stock-taking".

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”.

Statement in literature advertising the lease on the Panasonic store.

Image: Statement on property agent’s literature, February 2012.

Panasonic store: Closed "for stock-taking and refurbishment":

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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  1. Saw the sign today while shopping. Thought it strange that they are having a refurb considering they have not been there that long.

  2. Ooooooo another any empty shop…. lets think what it could be used for
    …. Butcher, Baker or Candle Stick Maker? Well no chance of the first two, so its Candle Stick Maker which may be best option now we are forced to buy the horrendously expensive and so called ‘green low energy bulbs’ and the constant increase in eletricity cost to run the little blighters … sorry… lighters. Failing that what about a Payday Loan Shark … sorry…. Shop to help us afford to pay for food shopping if the cost of food carries on at the current rate of climb!

    Happy Days!
    Phil Holes

  3. How about a nice quiet Italian restaurant? Or a real Post Office? Or a bookshop?

    Dream on, me.

    Bet we get an estate agent or building society branch. 🙂

  4. Scott Lahive, Manager at the Willow Brook Centre, was on leave when the above article was published over a week ago. Having returned to work today, he has kindly provided the following comment to The Journal:

    “The management team at the Willow Brook Centre was totally unaware that the Panasonic branch would cease trading.”

    “Although national press has reported the company being in trouble globally, there has been no warning that local branches could close. It’s obviously been a shock to the staff, their customers and indeed the entire centre that we were led to believe the store would be undergoing a refurbishment.”

    “We are currently in discussions with Panastores, the lease holder, to determine their immediate and long term plans.”

  5. Think of something useful then ignore that. If you look at the centre then what is missing is a burger king. Got all other fast food outlets.

  6. Let’s face it. That store was never going to work out. Brand specific stores like Panasonic and Sony never work out, especially when it’s basically part of a supermarket that has similar (but on a budget) products on sale.

    Anyone suggesting fast food will be disappointed too. They won’t have one inside the main building. Also, a Next store? Really? Come on now. The one in Cribbs is close enough and barely ever has anyone in it.

  7. Aaron – Asda bedminster has a McDonalds inside their store for many years now! Now why do you think it won’t work in a main building? The mall Cribbs also have fast food giants in-house.

  8. First…the price of the renting units are so highhhhhhh…but nobody will put the price down! e are in huge economic crisis but nobody put the prices down on the retail unit. Look the Mall Cribs…full of empty shop! Everybody is leaving. Shoping centers are too greedy/ Same in Bristol.

    I always thought that a Mc Donald in Bradley Stoke would do great! But that’s it… NEXT? Come on we are in Bradley Stoke…a city to sleep and nothing else.

  9. It won’t be a Next store – they looked the Willowbrook in the early stages and decided against it – they invested in updating the Cribbs Causeway store instead. I found this out through email exchanges with their helpful real estate guy.

    A Post Office would be good, but I doubt if that would happen, as we have “too many” for the population of BS 🙂

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