Robert Goddard to close March store as company concentrates on its bigger outlets with new store for Biggleswade and refurbishment at Wisbech

Fashion boss Oliver Tookman (right) is to close the March outlet of Robert Goddard although the comp

Fashion boss Oliver Tookman (right) is to close the March outlet of Robert Goddard although the company will continue its expansion elsewhere with the summer opening of a branch in Biggleswade. Its Wisbech store will also be refurbished. Picture; ARCHANT - Credit: Archant

Fashion entrepreneur Oliver Tookman is to close the March branch of Robert Goddard – previously Boon and Potter – to focus on investment in his larger stores and a growing on-line market.

“Our March store is one of the smallest in the group and sits between two larger stores in Wisbech and Huntingdon” he said.

“We are an independent business with finite resources, and we feel that the investment required to refurbish the store would be better placed enhancing our customers’ experience at the neighbouring stores.

“These are better able to house more comprehensive ranges.”

Shutting shop will mean the end of an era after his company acquired what was then Boon and Potter in 2011. Robert Goddard acquired the store that had been run for the previous 32 years by Richard and Judith Tasker. They had feared that without a buyer they would have been forced to close ahead of their planned retirement.

Mr Tookman said: “Many of our shoppers live within a small distance of either our Wisbech store, or our new Huntingdon store, which we relocated to larger premises last year.

“We hope that they will continue shopping with us at our other locations, which are all able to offer more choice and I’m certain they’ll continue to enjoy the same exemplary service they are used to receiving.”

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And far from contracting Robert Goddard is forging ahead with the opening of a new store at Biggleswade this summer and a refurbishment of its Wisbech store later in the year.

“The March store will officially close its doors in a few weeks’ time and we will hold a closing down sale until then,” he said.

“I’d like to take this opportunity to say thank you and express my gratitude for the continued loyalty of our customers over the years since we acquired Boon and Potter.”

Robert Goddard was founded in 1895 by George Goddard, Robert’s grandfather. The business was acquired by Mr Tookman in 2008, when it had two stores in Wisbech and Spalding.

It is now ‘home’ to a selection of the world’s leading designer brands including Armani, Hugo Boss, Gant, Ted Baker and many more, all housed under one roof and delivered with outstanding service.

By the end of 2019 they plan to have six stores across Bedfordshire, Cambridgeshire, Lincolnshire and Northamptonshire.

Mr Tookman has been re-building and developing his e-commerce site which he hopes to expand in coming years.