House of Fraser Carlisle

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07 Jun 2018 08:19 #1 by Moylesey
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It seems. Big blow for Carlisle and another big empty building.

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07 Jun 2018 08:21 #2 by CCU
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Was just going to post the same, that’s one big unit to fill...

www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-44394948

Win or Lose, Up The Blues!

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07 Jun 2018 08:40 #3 by Lancs blue
Replied by Lancs blue on topic House of Fraser Carlisle
Is the footprint big enough for a new stadium??

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07 Jun 2018 08:47 #4 by ExiledJock
Replied by ExiledJock on topic House of Fraser Carlisle
Bleak. It's a huge space, although we were always told Primark couldn't find anywhere big enough. With a bit of imagination maybe it could be split into spaces other retailers might want. Bulloughs is still sitting empty and, on the face of it, that must be one of the most desirable places to live and work in the North West - but it just does not work for large scale retail any more.

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07 Jun 2018 09:12 #5 by DeckchairBlue
Replied by DeckchairBlue on topic House of Fraser Carlisle
Lincoln still haven't found anyone to take on the store that BHS left when they went bust, so that means there'll now be 2 massive stores in Lincoln City centre stood empty.

I wonder if it's worth splitting into small units to try and attract more retailers rather than holding out for 1 big anchor store.

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07 Jun 2018 09:18 #6 by mojo
Replied by mojo on topic House of Fraser Carlisle
in 10 years time, the city centre will be a bank, a post office a few independent cafes and bars and the rest will be residential.

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07 Jun 2018 09:29 #7 by Mortonblue
Replied by Mortonblue on topic House of Fraser Carlisle

mojo wrote: in 10 years time, the city centre will be a bank, a post office a few independent cafes and bars and the rest will be residential.

How long has the old Diaz's clothes shop been closed ?

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07 Jun 2018 09:45 #8 by BelleVueBoy
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07 Jun 2018 09:47 #9 by orfc
Replied by orfc on topic House of Fraser Carlisle
Never fear, give it 15 years and the council will cover it in scaffolding

Binns genuinely a shop I haven't been in for years, I bought some fabric paint in there nearly 30 years ago. Just looked too classy for me :-)

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07 Jun 2018 09:57 #10 by NORTHERNSOUL
Replied by NORTHERNSOUL on topic House of Fraser Carlisle

orfc wrote: Never fear, give it 15 years and the council will cover it in scaffolding

Binns genuinely a shop I haven't been in for years, I bought some fabric paint in there nearly 30 years ago. Just looked too classy for me :-)


What I don't get is why these big retail companies rent/lease their premises surely the money they spend on leases could be used to make loan/mortgage repayments and in House of Frasers case they would likely all of been paid off long ago and therefore wouldn't be in the position they find themselves in now

" if the old git stepped out in front of my car i wouldnt be looking for the brakes thats for sure "

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07 Jun 2018 10:00 #11 by DeckchairBlue
Replied by DeckchairBlue on topic House of Fraser Carlisle
Perhaps leasing cuts down the liability for maintenance on the buildings.

Also, as has been shown today, it means if the the business is in trouble they are able to close a lot of stores very quickly without having to wait for someone else to take over the building.

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07 Jun 2018 10:01 #12 by Gundog
Replied by Gundog on topic House of Fraser Carlisle
Very sad, Sir Hugh Fraser will be turning in his grave - so will Harry.

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07 Jun 2018 10:14 #13 by NORTHERNSOUL
Replied by NORTHERNSOUL on topic House of Fraser Carlisle

DeckchairBlue wrote: Perhaps leasing cuts down the liability for maintenance on the buildings.

Also, as has been shown today, it means if the the business is in trouble they are able to close a lot of stores very quickly without having to wait for someone else to take over the building.


Yes but if you owned them all and had been around as long as HoF you wouldn't be in trouble because you would no longer have the largest item of expenditure as youd of paid off its loan years ago and if you did hit problems you could just sell off a couple of freeholds to solve your cash flow issues instead of closing half your stores which we all know will spell the end for the others.

I would imagine the situation is that at one time they will have owned them all but have seen a quick buck to be made by selling them off to property/investment companies for the benefit of the owners that or they will have sold them off a couple at time every time they've had cash flow issues in the past.

" if the old git stepped out in front of my car i wouldnt be looking for the brakes thats for sure "

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07 Jun 2018 10:20 #14 by mojo
Replied by mojo on topic House of Fraser Carlisle

NORTHERNSOUL wrote:

DeckchairBlue wrote: Perhaps leasing cuts down the liability for maintenance on the buildings.

Also, as has been shown today, it means if the the business is in trouble they are able to close a lot of stores very quickly without having to wait for someone else to take over the building.


Yes but if you owned them all and had been around as long as HoF you wouldn't be in trouble because you would no longer have the largest item of expenditure as youd of paid off its loan years ago and if you did hit problems you could just sell off a couple of freeholds to solve your cash flow issues instead of closing half your stores which we all know will spell the end for the others.

I would imagine the situation is that at one time they will have owned them all but have seen a quick buck to be made by selling them off to property/investment companies for the benefit of the owners that or they will have sold them off a couple at time every time they've had cash flow issues in the past.


exactly what I said. short term pain, as in the mortgage repayments, long term gain as you own assets that will only go up in value.

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07 Jun 2018 10:21 #15 by Happyblue
Replied by Happyblue on topic House of Fraser Carlisle
Would imagine if it was more cost effective to buy retail outlets more companies would do it, But they will be a reason why they don't buy properties.

Owners like the stadium, full of Sh!T

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07 Jun 2018 10:25 #16 by mojo
Replied by mojo on topic House of Fraser Carlisle
won't let me edit so here's a new post.

I work for a huge multinational, multi billion dollar company and they are the same. we rent our building, albeit on 25 year leases, and the rent they pay would have bought the building outright 3 times over up to now.

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07 Jun 2018 10:48 #17 by CCU
Replied by CCU on topic House of Fraser Carlisle
Just been in, sale hasn’t started...

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07 Jun 2018 11:08 #18 by thesilentone
Replied by thesilentone on topic House of Fraser Carlisle
The High St is out of kilter with the Tinterweb...........

Property Developers and ' Funds ' owning large High St stores (Buildings), based on a business model this is 10-20 years old.

Councils that have loaded business rates and parking charges to paper over the hole in the balance sheet.

Worst of all, the change of the market dictating cheap tat sells in our throw away World.

House of Fraser are just another casualty of the above, and sitting on their hands. It looks to me like they are almost bust..........

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07 Jun 2018 11:19 #19 by orfc
Replied by orfc on topic House of Fraser Carlisle

thesilentone wrote:
House of Fraser are just another casualty of the above, and sitting on their hands. It looks to me like they are almost bust..........


Pretty much, their patter about reacting to a "retail industry undergoing fundamental change" might carry more weight if they were opening different types of stores, carrying different products, or improving customer service, rather than slamming down the shutters on over half their stores - that looks terminal

Looking at english st now, if Binns goes, I think there's only WHSmiths, Boots and Marks and Spencers left that were there when I was a kid. Oh aye, and TopMan/Shop

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07 Jun 2018 11:34 #20 by Happyblue
Replied by Happyblue on topic House of Fraser Carlisle
The house of Fraser has never appealed to me , The stuff was marked up massively compared to the brand's own stores, it's never offered that wow feeling that a department store should offer. Also the one in Carlisle is tiny for a department store . It just doesnt have the appeal to me of somehere like John Lewis or Fenwick's.

Owners like the stadium, full of Sh!T

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07 Jun 2018 12:05 #21 by thesilentone
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Carlisle does not have enough high end spenders to sustain what we had 30 years ago.

In addition, the money spent at Gretna Gateway is astronomical..........

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07 Jun 2018 12:12 #22 by CCU
Replied by CCU on topic House of Fraser Carlisle

thesilentone wrote: In addition, the money spent at Gretna Gateway is astronomical..........


Sod knows what on as most of the shops at Gateway are turd?!

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07 Jun 2018 12:36 #23 by Vogel
Replied by Vogel on topic House of Fraser Carlisle

NORTHERNSOUL wrote:

orfc wrote: Never fear, give it 15 years and the council will cover it in scaffolding

Binns genuinely a shop I haven't been in for years, I bought some fabric paint in there nearly 30 years ago. Just looked too classy for me :-)


What I don't get is why these big retail companies rent/lease their premises surely the money they spend on leases could be used to make loan/mortgage repayments and in House of Frasers case they would likely all of been paid off long ago and therefore wouldn't be in the position they find themselves in now


Quite right Barry and loads of them used to own all there own property. Unfortunately the financial wizz kids see that as dead money and prioritised short term gain, most of it got sold off to then lease it back which makes them more vulnerable in a downturn. Having said that there is an inevitable decline in the high street unless you want a fake tan or your nails done.

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07 Jun 2018 12:48 #24 by pacirv
Replied by pacirv on topic House of Fraser Carlisle
Maybe the old Bulloughs store will become a Days outlet once EWM open their new headquarters, it would make sense. The council have blocked out of town development because it could affect the city centre but that one may well come back to bite them on the bum if we lose M&S and Debenhams at some point on top of the House of Fraser closure.

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07 Jun 2018 12:57 #25 by NORTHERNSOUL
Replied by NORTHERNSOUL on topic House of Fraser Carlisle

Vogel wrote:

NORTHERNSOUL wrote:

orfc wrote: Never fear, give it 15 years and the council will cover it in scaffolding

Binns genuinely a shop I haven't been in for years, I bought some fabric paint in there nearly 30 years ago. Just looked too classy for me :-)


What I don't get is why these big retail companies rent/lease their premises surely the money they spend on leases could be used to make loan/mortgage repayments and in House of Frasers case they would likely all of been paid off long ago and therefore wouldn't be in the position they find themselves in now


Quite right Barry and loads of them used to own all there own property. Unfortunately the financial wizz kids see that as dead money and prioritised short term gain, most of it got sold off to then lease it back which makes them more vulnerable in a downturn. Having said that there is an inevitable decline in the high street unless you want a fake tan or your nails done.


Not saying specifically Binns but I think a lot of businesses that have both online and high st presence are missing a trick in that the likes of Argos mainly do order online and collect from store [ that way theres no cost and no hassle with the delivery companies ] yet other companies keep the two aspects totally separate and guess what when people go to Argos to pick up their online ordered stuff they go hey i could just get this or that while i.m here driving their sales even further and in the Case of shops like HoF it would allow them to sell lower priced/ better value goods online without bringing down the high margin stuff they sell in store.

" if the old git stepped out in front of my car i wouldnt be looking for the brakes thats for sure "

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07 Jun 2018 13:02 #26 by thesilentone
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CCU wrote:

thesilentone wrote: In addition, the money spent at Gretna Gateway is astronomical..........


Sod knows what on as most of the shops at Gateway are turd?!


Anyone in particular, or all of them ?

gretnagateway.com/stores/

Carlisle would give anything to have half of these brands directly in the City.

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07 Jun 2018 13:32 - 07 Jun 2018 13:33 #27 by Northumbrian
Replied by Northumbrian on topic House of Fraser Carlisle
I was at a big retail event recently and saw a presentation by a future retail guru. His view was less pessimistic for the high street. He estimated that in 10 to 20 years there will be 20 - 30% fewer retail outlets in the average high street. His view was that there is still very much a role for bricks and mortar retail. Not everyone likes shopping online, you can't try clothes on etc. He also highlighted that those focusing on the shopping experience would still thrive.

His view was that companies aren't going out of business because of the internet and e-commerce.... The were going under because they were badly run and failed to change... which he argued has always happened. The feeling was that in fact the best run ecommerce retailers would branch out into bricks and mortar, which we are seeing now. The positive he suggested was that the high streets could become much more unique, rather than being the same retailers in each city centre, and that would become tbeir selling point.

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Last edit: 07 Jun 2018 13:33 by Northumbrian.

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07 Jun 2018 13:43 #28 by DeckchairBlue
Replied by DeckchairBlue on topic House of Fraser Carlisle

NORTHERNSOUL wrote:

Vogel wrote:

NORTHERNSOUL wrote:

orfc wrote: Never fear, give it 15 years and the council will cover it in scaffolding

Binns genuinely a shop I haven't been in for years, I bought some fabric paint in there nearly 30 years ago. Just looked too classy for me :-)


What I don't get is why these big retail companies rent/lease their premises surely the money they spend on leases could be used to make loan/mortgage repayments and in House of Frasers case they would likely all of been paid off long ago and therefore wouldn't be in the position they find themselves in now


Quite right Barry and loads of them used to own all there own property. Unfortunately the financial wizz kids see that as dead money and prioritised short term gain, most of it got sold off to then lease it back which makes them more vulnerable in a downturn. Having said that there is an inevitable decline in the high street unless you want a fake tan or your nails done.


Not saying specifically Binns but I think a lot of businesses that have both online and high st presence are missing a trick in that the likes of Argos mainly do order online and collect from store [ that way theres no cost and no hassle with the delivery companies ] yet other companies keep the two aspects totally separate and guess what when people go to Argos to pick up their online ordered stuff they go hey i could just get this or that while i.m here driving their sales even further and in the Case of shops like HoF it would allow them to sell lower priced/ better value goods online without bringing down the high margin stuff they sell in store.


2 different retail sectors though surely.

Argos have low cost stuff you could get as an impulse purchase/you needed anyways.

I can't see many people buying a top online from HoF, going to pick it up, then deciding to buy a pair of Levi's whilst they are there.

Just about everywhere offers collect in store now don't they ?

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07 Jun 2018 14:30 #29 by High Street
Replied by High Street on topic House of Fraser Carlisle
I’m astonished it’s still open. Last time l was in there, l was with my mam and l was a kid. I’m 41 now l haven’t been in it since. Though it still smells the same when l walk past.

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07 Jun 2018 17:08 #30 by Waltero
Replied by Waltero on topic House of Fraser Carlisle
I shudder when the wife says she wants to go shopping at that souless tip. I can't stand it

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07 Jun 2018 17:17 #31 by carwash
Replied by carwash on topic House of Fraser Carlisle
I think Binns and M&S have the same problem in that their customers get older every year and they can't compete in fashion with Zara, H&M, River Island, Mango etc.

Problem for the high street is who will replace these dinosaur retailers as they die off. Sadly I think a lot of retail space will be left empty.

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07 Jun 2018 17:53 #32 by Alan
Replied by Alan on topic House of Fraser Carlisle
I've been a few times and the only shop with a hint of Lure to me is the Cadbury Shop which I would be more than happy to be locked in for a month the rest as CCU has said are shite.
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07 Jun 2018 19:56 #33 by Zebby
Replied by Zebby on topic House of Fraser Carlisle
Sad day for me my mam worked in the restaurant for about 20 years and used to regularly go in for a coffee to see her ..was a decent shop in its day and had some cracking conversation with Harry on the lifts

Be just and fear not

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08 Jun 2018 00:42 #34 by CCU
Replied by CCU on topic House of Fraser Carlisle

BelleVueBoy wrote: Maybe a "Days" store is on its way...
www.drapersonline.com/news/days-departme...-out/7021420.article


You’d think the old Bulloughs would be ideal, just along from Rufus House and on a lovely street?

Day is like a posher Mike Ashley buying up all these ‘names’...

Win or Lose, Up The Blues!

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09 Jun 2018 01:21 #35 by munchymagic
Replied by munchymagic on topic House of Fraser Carlisle
I went in there as a kid to buy Star Wars figures.

Since then always go in there to buy the missus's perfumes.

Shame it is closing but the clothing always looked stuffy and unfashionable - think 99p jeans and add another £49.00.

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09 Jun 2018 01:25 #36 by Mouldy
Replied by Mouldy on topic House of Fraser Carlisle

munchymagic wrote: I went in there as a kid to buy Star Wars figures.

Since then always go in there to buy the missus's perfumes.

Shame it is closing but the clothing always looked stuffy and unfashionable - think 99p jeans and add another £49.00.


I think that’s the big thing (other than online shopping) that’s killing high streets. The clothes are just shite!

all views my own

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09 Jun 2018 03:56 #37 by Dentonholmersimpson
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I am in my sixties and as a man hates shopping.

Probably about 30 years ago we had the emergence of '' out of town shopping''.

I thought this was fantastic,no longer would I have to drag myself up town for a pair of shoes.

Now we have online shopping where you can tap a few keys and have delivered what ever you want within 24 hours, fantastic.

However, this hardly helps the city centre, we need the council to promote more events like the poppy display at the castle to bring in tourists.

The town centre will end up like it was 50 years ago with independant shops, that sell unique products.

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09 Jun 2018 04:48 #38 by munchymagic
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Dentonholmersimpson wrote: I am in my sixties and as a man hates shopping.

Probably about 30 years ago we had the emergence of '' out of town shopping''.

I thought this was fantastic,no longer would I have to drag myself up town for a pair of shoes.

Now we have online shopping where you can tap a few keys and have delivered what ever you want within 24 hours, fantastic.

However, this hardly helps the city centre, we need the council to promote more events like the poppy display at the castle to bring in tourists.

The town centre will end up like it was 50 years ago with independant shops, that sell unique products.


The old 'County Store' in The Lanes.

That did not last but in the day hey, their clothes were great as they had loads of Pepe and Hard Core clothing and it was ace, I bought some Pepe jeans from there and had false fabric turn ups at the bottom of them, now top that - and they came with a free key ring as well....

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02 Aug 2018 11:05 #39 by bejustandfearprokas
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Philip Day in talks with House of Fraser apparently.

This would surely be his priority rather than CUFC.

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02 Aug 2018 11:10 - 02 Aug 2018 11:11 #40 by CCU
Replied by CCU on topic House of Fraser Carlisle
Mike Ashley was reported to be hovering too...

(In House of Fraser, not us!)

Win or Lose, Up The Blues!
Last edit: 02 Aug 2018 11:11 by CCU.

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02 Aug 2018 11:59 #41 by heilkmoon
Replied by heilkmoon on topic House of Fraser Carlisle
Day's missing a trick I think.

Get CUFC fans onside and he could have a traveling army modelling EWM mid-priced knitwear and slacks around the country and on TV.
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02 Aug 2018 14:08 #42 by carwash
Replied by carwash on topic House of Fraser Carlisle
EWM were also supposed to be casting an eye over some of the Wyevale garden centres which are up for sale. I think PD just wants his hands on Jenners in Edinburgh which has always been profitable and would be a superb flagship for EWM.

Sadly I think HoF might end up in administration with buyers fighting over the best stores and the rest being closed. I can't see how a business charging 30% more than airports for perfumes and cosmetics can survive in this retail climate.

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02 Aug 2018 14:52 #43 by NORTHERNSOUL
Replied by NORTHERNSOUL on topic House of Fraser Carlisle

carwash wrote: EWM were also supposed to be casting an eye over some of the Wyevale garden centres which are up for sale. I think PD just wants his hands on Jenners in Edinburgh which has always been profitable and would be a superb flagship for EWM.

Sadly I think HoF might end up in administration with buyers fighting over the best stores and the rest being closed. I can't see how a business charging 30% more than airports for perfumes and cosmetics can survive in this retail climate.


Fully agree with you there about the prices carwash but the customers they do attract are the demographic who are the least likely to buy online [ ladies that lunch and shop etc ] HOF.s problem is that those ladies although getting older are looking at younger age products [ if that makes sense ] and HOF hasn't grasped that someone I chat with who works in a senior position in that sector tells me that someone like Phillip Day and EWM with the clout behind them to stand the continued losses while you repositioned the offer could have a massive winner on their hands with their knowledge of the market and the ability to get landlords to get realistic on their rents in exchange for stability but she says the secret is to get loads more concessions in which suit the customer base she cites Dysons as an example as having a massive market and something that those with money will pay a fortune for to get a premium brand with a good reputation and she reckons repeat that 40 times and the store itself could limit its self to a very narrow area of products meaning a very low staff requirement and that along with the rent reductions a couple of other inovations and a new owner could have a profitable business in about 18 months. In fact, if you look at what shes suggesting and it doesn't look much different to the model that EWM are currently toying with.

" if the old git stepped out in front of my car i wouldnt be looking for the brakes thats for sure "

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02 Aug 2018 20:31 #44 by shaldon1
Replied by shaldon1 on topic House of Fraser Carlisle
Any person that knows anything about the retail business knows the truth.The situation is horrific.Landlords are trying to get out with enormous losses but that will not solve the problem.EWM seem to have money or access to funds at the moment but do you see crowds of customers in their shops any longer because I do not. These shops do not attract the footfall they used to under the David Stevenson regime. However, that does not mean that PD is not right for Carlisle United because he is. It could become his main interest if a bid for his empire arises at it will.

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02 Aug 2018 21:04 #45 by CCU
Replied by CCU on topic House of Fraser Carlisle
Not as many folk in shops as lots shop online. Anyone who knows anything about retail knows that!

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02 Aug 2018 21:30 #46 by Laffy
Replied by Laffy on topic House of Fraser Carlisle
A real shame of this goes down but it’s been coming for a while-it must have changed hands at least 3 times in the last few years.

Frasers is a bit like a land based Amazon site-loads of different types of stock from many retailers with concessions but with key differences-horrible rent,rates and staff costs.Going into a department store for me was about having lots of different brands and products so no faffing about up and down a street.You can now do that on Amazon and also compare prices.I use Secretsales and BrandAlley-quality gear at a fraction of RRP.

You could see they were in trouble as they usually had a flash sale just before the quarter rent date-next one is late September and it’s £25m apparently.

I think PD will be interested in a pre pack administration so he can choose the best assets eg Jenners, fire sale stock and bingo, a new platform for very little cost.Its too far gone without major surgery and that means admin for me.

Sadly a lot of people are going to lose their livelihoods and likely to trigger a run of similar car crashes in the next few months.

I don’t think PD is immune to all this either-but he carries no debt or onerous leases so his entire focus is on the market and his stock.

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02 Aug 2018 23:23 #47 by seesaw50
Replied by seesaw50 on topic House of Fraser Carlisle

heilkmoon wrote: Day's missing a trick I think.

Get CUFC fans onside and he could have a traveling army modelling EWM mid-priced knitwear and slacks around the country and on TV.


I'm hearing comrade Lazarus or Lazerarse which is more fitting for a guy such as he, got the knock back for modelling cardigans but the ok for socks but not on TV.

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is to have won the lottery of life !

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02 Aug 2018 23:35 #48 by howoldboy
Replied by howoldboy on topic House of Fraser Carlisle

Laffy wrote: A real shame of this goes down but it’s been coming for a while-it must have changed hands at least 3 times in the last few years.

Frasers is a bit like a land based Amazon site-loads of different types of stock from many retailers with concessions but with key differences-horrible rent,rates and staff costs.Going into a department store for me was about having lots of different brands and products so no faffing about up and down a street.You can now do that on Amazon and also compare prices.I use Secretsales and BrandAlley-quality gear at a fraction of RRP.

You could see they were in trouble as they usually had a flash sale just before the quarter rent date-next one is late September and it’s £25m apparently.

I think PD will be interested in a pre pack administration so he can choose the best assets eg Jenners, fire sale stock and bingo, a new platform for very little cost.Its too far gone without major surgery and that means admin for me.

Sadly a lot of people are going to lose their livelihoods and likely to trigger a run of similar car crashes in the next few months.

I don’t think PD is immune to all this either-but he carries no debt or onerous leases so his entire focus is on the market and his stock.



You say that with a total lack of empathy. Capitalism at its best.
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03 Aug 2018 00:02 #49 by munchymagic
Replied by munchymagic on topic House of Fraser Carlisle
Department stores have been a joke and on the way out since the seventies and the likes of 'Are You Being Served'.

Binns and Bulloughs used to sell overpriced grandad stuff as I was growing up, Co-Op on Botchergate was marginally better.

Then County Stores opened in The Lanes and they actually sold fashionable items of clothing and had a decent deli and bakery - I used it daily.

Don't know what happened there but it was the best of the lot.

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03 Aug 2018 08:16 #50 by heilkmoon
Replied by heilkmoon on topic House of Fraser Carlisle
My mrs worked at a beautician franchise in the Huddersfield HOF for a year or two, which is in the town's poshest indoor shopping mall.

Her experience does kind of tie in with NS's comments above - there is a demographic of affluent older, usually female shoppers who are prepared to pay more than double in HOF for the same service or product they could get from a stall in the shopping mall atrium a matter of yards away. Some would be in there almost daily, eating at the cafe etc.

There is also a younger wealthy, often Asian or Oriental clientele for whom money is no object who just like shopping and being seen in there.

Another observation was the incredible amount of shoplifting that goes on, especially from the perfume counters, and very rarely was anyone caught despite staff alerting the security guards.

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