Oxford’s ironmonger closes after 480 years

2610photo2Gill and Co, the high street ironmonger, is closing after 480 years’ trading in Oxford blaming recession and the rise of DIY stores.
Victor Hunt, owner of Gill said: “The shop has been here for over 50 years and Gill’s is the oldest ironmonger’s in England, so we are coming to the end of an era. “Sales have declined in recent years and we are moving out before we start to lose money. Our client base is 45 plus, and some of the customers are considerably older than that. Inevitably, as time goes by, we lose a few. The younger customers seem happier these days to drive to B&Q and other out-of-town stores.” The store has operated from a number of different locations in and around the High Street over the years. Mr Hunt said: “My wife and I run another Gill’s store in Chipping Norton which is doing very well because the people in the town support us. We are now shifting all our stock from the Oxford shop to Chipping Norton.” Mr Hunt bought the business 10 years ago and opened the Chipping Norton branch six years ago.

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