Mothercare condemned over Kirkcaldy branch closure press release

Mothercare is to close 60 stores. Picture: JPIMedia
Mothercare is to close 60 stores. Picture: JPIMedia

Mothercare’s announcement, that the Kirkcaldy branch will close, by promoting “amazing bargains” in a closing down sale has been condemned.

In a press release sent this morning, the firm makes no mention of how many staff at the retail park outlet will lose their jobs, or the precise date of closure.

Ignoring the awful situation of laying off staff at Christmas, the firm instead focused on what it called “amazing bargains” in the closing down sale.

The manner in which the firm made the announcement has been branded “cynical”, “shoddy”, and “heartless”.

READ MORE: Click here to read the press release in full

A Mothercare spokesperson said: “This is a great opportunity for shoppers to get some amazing bargains on last minute Christmas gifts and maternity, baby and toddler essentials.

“Our most popular ranges will sell out quickly so we encourage all customers to come into the store as soon as possible to avoid disappointment.

“We’d like to thank all our customers in the area for their support and look forward to continuing to serve them at our Edinburgh store and online at mothercare.com.”

The store is one of 60 that will close down as part of a restructuring plan.

It is understood that around 10 staff could be affected in Kirkcaldy, and they have not been informed of when their contracts will be terminated.

The Press has asked Mothercare when the store will close and how many staff are affected and is awaiting a response.

Kirkcaldy MSP David Torrance condemned Mothercare’s announcement of the Kirkcaldy shop closure in the week before Christmas.

He said: “This announcement is very disappointing and my thoughts are with staff the whose jobs are affected.

“The way the closure has been made public in the week before Christmas by means of publicising a closing down sale seems very cynical.

“The future of retailing in Kirkcaldy must be in moving away from multiples like Mothercare by creating the right environment for small independent retailers.”

Lesley Laird, Kirkcaldy and Cowdenbeath MP, said: “Back in May Kirkcaldy was included on a leaked list of Mothercare stores due to close but the firm refused to confirm the list was accurate.

“And now, out of the blue, just before Christmas, the company releases a press statement encouraging residents to come pick up a bargain in a closing down sale.

“No mention of numbers of staff who may lose their jobs, no mention of a closing date and no mention about what support is being given to staff during this process. And, when we have gone back to the company seeking this information they have be unable to provide it.

“That’s a shoddy way to treat our community and I’ve made my thoughts known to Mothercare representatives this morning.

The retailer also came under fire from Union chiefs over their treatment of staff.”

Dave Gill, Usdaw National Officer said: “We are appalled that Mothercare are attempting to turn this devastating news for staff into a positive.

“The company had decided to close stores as part of a restructuring before June next year, so it seems heartless to drop this bombshell just before Christmas.

“We hope that the company will rethink their attitude to this store closure and recognise the impact it will have on their employees, who deserve to be treated with respect and dignity.

“The company should also consider what this means for the local community and economy of Kirkcaldy.”

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