Johnson's Ironmongers in March set to close after nearly 180 years
PUBLISHED: 10:59 14 May 2018 | UPDATED: 10:59 14 May 2018
A family-run shop that has been in March for nearly 180 years will be closing as owners say more people are choosing to shop online.
Johnson’s Ironmongers, in Dartford Road, was established in 1839 and is well known for selling everything from hardware to household, decorating and gardening goods.
Owners Diana and Gavin Philpott released a statement today (May 14) thanking the people of March for their custom over the years.
However, they state that they won’t be disappearing completely as they will be working on developing a new key cutting and security business which will re-launch later in the year.
They say that over the last decade they have seen a “fundamental change” in shopping with people preferring to buy online and out of town, with the town centre “becoming the last resort.”
A post on social media said: “Due to retirement and changing shopping habits, Diana and I have taken the decision to close Johnson’s store in Dartford Road.
“We’d like to thank all the people of March and beyond who have supported the business over nearly 180 years.
“We will be selling off the stock over the next few weeks with a minimum of 20 per cent off (and up to 60 per cent off selected lines) - this is your last chance to grab that item “you knew you would get here”.
“We won’t be disappearing completely; over the next couple of months we will be working on developing our key cutting and security business to re-launch in a new format later in the year.”
A statement issued with the post adds that change in shopping habits “is not a basis for a sustainable business.”
It reads: “Over the last decade we have seen a more fundamental change in shopping, with people preferring to buy online and out of town, with the town centre becoming the last resort.
“Unfortunately, this is not the basis for a sustainable business, so with Diana ready for retirement and Gavin looking for a new challenge, we have decided to close the high street store.
“We’ve often heard people say ‘I’ve been everywhere, but I knew I would get it here’ – now is your last chance!
“We’ve not taken this decision lightly. Our thanks go out to all the people of March and beyond who have supported us and other local businesses over the past 180 years.”
The shop has passed through generations of three different families.