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Rickards of Bath to close after more than 100 years

By LJGillespie  |  Posted: January 15, 2014

  • Rickards of Bath to close after more than 100 years

  • Rickards of Bath to close after more than 100 years

  • Rickards of Bath to close after more than 100 years

  • Rickards of Bath to close after more than 100 years

Comments (17)

A bag shop that has been serving customers for more than 100 years is to close.

Rickards of Bath on Northumberland Place is to close at the beginning of March.

The shop opened in the city in 1910. At the time the family-run firm also had its own factory in Bath.

Current owners, Simon and Elaine Rogers, said in a statement that the internet had created too much competition.

Mr Rogers, whose family have owned the business for the past 60 years, said: “Retail has changed dramatically over the last ten years and has become much harder during the recession. The increase in online trading, rising overheads and high business rates have all added to our decision.

“We feel fortunate to have had such a successful business for so long but have now had enough and feel it is time for us to move on.

“The reaction from the public has been extraordinary, their kind words and support have been overwhelming.

Our staff have also been supportive and understanding which we very much appreciate.”

The closure will see the loss of three jobs.

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17 comments

  • ChronicReader  |  January 16 2014, 2:46PM

    the clue to the demise of this establishment is in the article. In the past it had its own factory in Bath. What would the company look like today if they had taken the difficult but sustainable route of continuing to manufacture their own products? Then they would have had a unique product and an interesting "boutique" brand that would have been of more interest to the consumer- and its likely they would have been a more successful company in the end. But instead (as in Britain in general) they stopped manufacturing, and started importing cheap goods from abroad instead, creaming off the massive profits in the huge mark ups. Of course ALL businesses that do this are now doomed. Consumers know they can find the exact same products elsewhere for half the cost on the internet. This is a perfect encapsulation of the poor business model that is going to end our retail industry.

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  • michar2014  |  January 16 2014, 2:10AM

    It must have been a very difficult decision to close down some business which was running for 100 years or so. They should have improvised and gone onto other things in order to stabilize their business according to current times.

    Rate   1
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  • apple2  |  January 15 2014, 10:37PM

    rogerh3: All the businesses in Northumberland Place pay rent including Rickards

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  • DaveF_Walcot  |  January 15 2014, 9:29PM

    Disappointing, but hardly surprising. When looking for a replacement wallet, I let out an expletive of shock at the cost. I walked out & bought an adequate one at a much cheaper price in the shop around the corner.

    Rate   -4
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  • rogerh3  |  January 15 2014, 7:15PM

    My apologies if I misread you post but you were responding to the comment by Ronnieeee apparently in agreement with his belief that it was a consequence of B&NES's refusal to reduce business rates. The fact is that B&NES do not own this property (or any others in Northumberland Place) so have no control over its rent, assuming that it is even rented.

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  • J_R_Deverell  |  January 15 2014, 4:47PM

    Happy New Year Roger, Look. I have been running this campaign for long enough to know who sets business rates. Where in my post does it even say BANES set business rates? Read it properly before making comments! BANES own 225 shop and commercial premises in the city so do have the power to lower rents for businesses. Their general attitude towards small business in the city is to treat the owners opinions with contempt. There are many things we can blame BANES for, the list is extensive. As a council they are rapidly becoming a menace to this city and the sooner the Lib Dems are cleansed from the Guildhall the sooner Bath can get back on track.

    Rate   -4
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  • rogerh3  |  January 15 2014, 3:21PM

    @ChiAm: So it's not the business rates even though the owners say they're a factor. But it is, according to you, the rent, even though they don't mention rent at all. And the shop isn't rented from B&NES anyway; indeed, given that they've been there over a century, may not be rented from anyone else either.

    Rate   10
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  • rogerh3  |  January 15 2014, 3:05PM

    @J_R_Deverell : Your kneejerk reaction is to blame B&NES even though they don't set business rates. Mind you, it makes a change from blaming the EU or immigrants.

    Rate   8
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  • ChiAm  |  January 15 2014, 2:32PM

    It is not the Business Rates with crippled the back of camels, the issue lies with rent in Bath. Along with B&ANES Council having preferential treatments towards "Chain Stores" as they will accept higher rent with regular payments without quibble.

    Rate   -3
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  • woodruff70  |  January 15 2014, 12:34PM

    I purchased a rucksack here last October, not particularly cheap, but ticked all the boxes I wanted. The staff were extremely helpful and pleasant - however the bag came with a long guarantee...where do I go if the bag develops a problem I wonder...

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