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‘Lifeline’ pharmacy to remain open after landlord significantly reduces rent


By Isabel Shaw
Reporter

05 Oct 2020

A LloydsPharmacy branch in Cardiff will no longer be forced to close its doors after the landlord agreed to reduce the store’s rent, the multiple has said.

Last month, LloydsPharmacy announced it was going to close its branch at 4c Heol y Deri in Rhiwbina, Cardiff, on 11 December, as a result of ‘declining revenue combined with a substantial rent,’ a spokesperson explained.

In response, over 1,100 residents signed a petition created by councillor Jayne Cowan to keep the pharmacy open and request a ‘rationale’ from the head office as to why the branch was set to close.

Ms Cowan told the Pharmacist that the town of Rhiwbina was home to ‘some of the oldest people in Cardiff and I know the chemist is well used,’ which is why she urged LloydsPharmacy to ‘think again to save this vital facility for our community.’

In a tweet she posted in early September, she also said that pharmacy was a ‘lifeline’ to many in the community.

Thanks to the landlord

Last week, a LloydsPharmacy spokesperson told the Pharmacist the branch would no longer have to shut after the landlord agreed to make a significant reduction to the rent.

‘This now enables us to remain financially viable and continue providing medicines and healthcare services to the Rhiwbina community,’ the spokesperson said.

‘We would like the landlord to be acknowledged for understanding the importance of keeping a pharmacy in the local community. Without their welcome intervention, we could not have continued to operate the pharmacy in the current economic environment.

‘We hope more landlords will work with us so that together we can navigate these unprecedented times and try to prevent the closure of further community pharmacies,’ they added.

Ms Cowan said she and her colleagues were ‘absolutely delighted that LloydsPharmacy has agreed to reverse their decision to close this essential service in Rhiwbina.’

She added: ‘We would like to thank LloydsPharmacy for listening to the 1,000 strong petition we launched and to the community for their unstinting support.’

Possible redundancies

In July, LloydsPharmacy told staff it will soon begin a restructuring process that could result in redundancy for some employees.

In a letter sent out to LloydsPharmacy staff, McKesson UK CEO, Toby Anderson outlined potential plans to restructure the business, required to protect the company’s long-term future after facing ‘increased costs’ and a ‘reduction in income,’ which have only been exaggerated by Covid-19 pressures.

The company warned staff that the changes may result in multiple redundancies. ‘This is likely to be an unsettling time for many colleagues, but we are committed to supporting you all throughout,’ Mr Anderson said.


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