9/21/2018 | Retail

Northumberland town post office and store changes hands

Specialist business property adviser, Christie & Co has completed on the freehold sale of Hawthorn Road Post Office, located in the town of Ashington, Northumberland, to an experienced local operator.

Hawthorn Road Post Office is located in the ‘Colliery Rows,’ a group of former mining cottages situated in a busy area of the town, and offers tobacco, confectionery, newspapers and magazines, and soft drinks. The store was owned by the same family for two generations, during which time the property underwent a full modern refit, providing more space for retail trade, and also introduced a Post Office service. The store presents the new operator with the opportunity to add an off licence, subject to planning permission, and extend opening hours.

Previous owner, Mrs Savage took the decision to sell the business to pursue retirement and comments, “Andy at Christie & Co gave an excellent service through the sale process, he explained the Post Office transfer process and took charge of the sale so that we could concentrate on running our business. We are now looking forward to our retirement safe with the knowledge that our former customers will still have all the services we used to provide for them.”

New owner, Mr Singh is an experienced local convenience store operator who was keen to invest in the business and introduce more new products and increase sales to the retail side of the store, including extending the range of grocery products. Mr Singh comments, “My thanks go to Christie & Co for their support during the buying process and their expert knowledge which made the deal smooth, we are looking forward to settling into the Post Office at Hawthorn Road and getting to know our customers.”

Andrew Birnie, Director at Christie & Co handled the sale and comments, “The sale of a business is complicated with many elements to be aware of and a post office adds another layer to the application process for the buyer to pass, including an online business plan and face to face interview with representatives of Post Office Ltd. Mr Singh now has a good opportunity to introduce new product lines and build on this extremely well-established business. We wish him well in his new venture.

“We had two interested parties looking to purchase Hawthorn Road Post Office, which highlights that, whilst high street retail is continuing to face issues and has fierce competition from online shopping, neighbourhood convenience stores and post offices are still thriving. The convenience element, including the speed of being served, parking outside or walking to the shop, and personal service, are all important to local customers and passing trade. Local businesses remain in demand and continue to sell well.”

Hawthorn Road Post Office was sold off an asking price of £210,000 for the freehold interest.