Famous high street name closes York shop – blaming ‘irrational’ landlord who refuses to lower rent

Being emptied… Jessops on Coney Street. Photographs: Richard McDougall
17 Dec 2020 @ 5.29 am
| Business

There used to be three branches of Jessops in York – now there aren’t any.

But according to the team behind the famous camera and photographic store, this doesn’t reflect any disillusionment with the city as a shopping destination.

Instead, they are blaming the landlord for refusing to reduce the rent.

On Tuesday, Jessops moved out of the last of its York shops on Coney Street.

The shop fittings have been removed and the signage taken down.

Previously branches on Coppergate and at Monks Cross closed, meaning that the nearest store is now in Leeds.

Looking to relocate

How it used to be. Photograph © Google Street View

Martin Rivers, head of finance at Jessops, told YorkMix: “We have always been very proud to be in York and our stores there have performed very well in the past.

“We have a very loyal customer base for all things photography/photo printing and accessories and telescopes.

“Our problem is entirely with our landlord refusing to discuss any reduction in rent during Covid-19.

“Their stance has been completely irrational and has forced our decision.”

According to documents lodged at the Land Registry, the owner of 12 Coney Street is Tryst Enterprises Limited, a property company based in East Finchley, London.

12 Coney Street

It bought 12 and 12a Coney Street – also home to Bills Restaurant – for £2.79m in April 2003.

Mr Rivers said he hoped this wasn’t the end for Jessops in York: “We are actively looking to relocate in York and do hope that can happen in the New Year.

“We are retaining our staff in order to be able to do that.”

Our message to any landlord with suitable premises in York centre is to contact to discuss.”

Landlords should contact Scott Worger, retail operations director, at Jessops head office.