SHOPPERS have expressed their sadness as the Your Co-op Food store prepares to close its doors for good.

Midcounties Co-operative confirmed that its shop on Lombard Street in Stourport has been making a loss for years, in part due to competition from the nearby Tesco and Lidl stores.

It was identified as a store that "no longer fit" with the company's long-term strategy back in 2020, with a “very difficult decision” made to close it permanently.

A spokesperson for Midcounties Co-operative said: "The Midcounties Co-operative Board regularly reviews our property footprint to ensure we’re providing the best opportunity to deliver for our members and support local communities across the Midcounties region.

"As part of this work, it was identified in 2020 that the Stourport store no longer fit with the long-term strategy of the Society.

"Our Board therefore took the very difficult decision to plan to close the store and we communicated this to our members earlier this year.

"The Stourport store has been part of our trading estate for many years, but over this time the store’s trade has been impacted by the opening of a large Tesco in 2014 and a Lidl 500 yards away.

“Despite significant investment into the store and the huge efforts of all of our colleagues, the store has unfortunately been loss-making for several years".

Signs in the shop window revealed to customers that the store would be open one last time on Saturday, September 27. 

People shared their sadness at the news on the ‘We Love Stourport-on-Severn Past and Present Day’ Facebook page, with residents praising the staff.

Sarah Preece said: "Such a shame. I do hope all the staff have other job options. Such a loss to the town".

Phillip Kelly said: "I for one will miss the Co-op. Sad to see it's closing. Good luck to all the staff."

Sandra Blackmore said: "The staff were their greatest asset. Very friendly, chatted to and took time with the pensioners too. All of you will be missed. Good luck."

Midcounties Co-operative added: "All affected colleagues have new roles in nearby stores and look forward to continuing to serve our loyal customers.

"The Travel, Post Office and Pharmacy that currently operate within the Stourport site continue to trade as usual. 

"We aim to relocate these businesses to a new location within Stourport over time and the Post Office has already initiated a public consultation regarding a proposed new site on the High Street, with updates expected soon".

A new Your Coop Food convenience shop opened at Areley Kings in November, which Post Office facilities.

The Post Office based at the Co-operative store at Lombard Street is set to move to 28 High Street with the final arrangements now being made.