Robert Dyas in Fareham to close, with Cosy Club owners to open a new bar
A BRANCH of Robert Dyas in Fareham is to close next month – and the site is be transformed by cafe-restaurant chain.
The landlord of the branch, in West Street, Fareham, terminated the DIY and hardware chain’s contract due to the new incoming tenant.
The branch is due to close on Thursday, April 9.
A spokesman for Robert Dyas said: ‘Robert Dyas renewed the lease in September 2019, but as per the contract, the landlord terminated this due to an alternative incoming tenant.
‘There are currently 11 colleagues working in this store, although many have been offered alternative roles within the business.’
Robert Dyas has more than stores, mainly in the south of England, including in Palmerston Road, Southsea and North Street in Chichester.
Loungers Ltd, which operates Lounge and Cosy Club venues across the country, has successfully applied to the council to turn the premise into a cafe-restaurant.
Founded in 2002 by three friends, the restaurant chain has more than 146 sites in England and Wales.
Its upcoming Fareham venue is part of the business’s plans to open 25 new sites a year – 20 are expected to be Lounges and five opening as Cosy Clubs.
The application was approved in October, with council officers concerned that the unit could have become vacant for potentially an extended period of time.
Councillor Katrina Trott hopes that Robert Dyas will consider moving its store into a vacant unit in Fareham Shopping Centre.
She said: ‘I think it would have been good idea if they had contacted Fareham Shopping Centre.
‘We need to encourage more shops in the centre with long term affordable rents.’
Addressing residents’ concerns about another cafe-style venue opening in the town centre, the councillor said they appear to be proving popular.
She said: ‘I know people say there are too many coffee shops and charity shops in the town centre, but they are generally full and serving a purpose.
‘Further along West Street towards the station there are lots of independent traders. I would encourage people to walk a bit further to visit these shops.’
Loungers Ltd was approached to comment.