CONCERNS that Newton Abbot might be on the verge of losing a popular store have been allayed.

‘Closing down’ signs have appeared in the town centre store, leading to speculation about jobs and the loss of Shoe Zone.

However, Newton Abbot Town Development Manager, Sally Henley has told the Mid-Devon Advertiser that this is not the case.

‘Since the closing down signs went up in the window of Shoe Zone last week, there has been a lot of speculation about the reasons,’ she said.

‘Having spoken with Shoe Zone head office, I’m delighted to confirm that the situation is nothing like that of Wilko.

‘Shoe Zone is a very solid business and is trading well in Newton Abbot: so much so that it needs a bigger shop and is actively searching for a suitable unit within the pedestrianised area.

‘Our town has a very low vacancy rate and therefore it is a struggle at present to find anything suitable, but I am working on it!’

It would have been a second blow to Newton Abbot town centre this week as nearby Wilko store is one of many branches around the country that is under the threat after the retailer collapsed into administration earlier this week.

Shoe Zone has been contacted for comment but has previously said: ‘No store closures have been announced and all stores remain open as usual.’

A spokesperson for the store said on Tuesday: ‘We can confirm it’s in the process of relocation.

‘We’ll issue a press release and will go back to you when the details of the new location will be confirmed.’