A CITY councillor has lamented the 'fragility of the economy' after it was confirmed the Argos store in Worcester city centre will not reopen its doors.

120 Argos standalone stores have not reopened since they closed at the start of the pandemic last March, including the Worcester store located in The Shambles, which will remain closed.

Cllr Lynn Denham, who represents Cathedral ward, said: "I certainly along with many other residents have fond memories of going into the city centre store and collecting packages and looking through the catalogues, and many family Christmas toys have come from there in the past.

"It is a sad reflection on the fragility of the economy, and a number of national chains seem to be suffering.

"There is another Argos store in Blackpole, but out of town isn’t as accessible for many people, it's fine if you have a car but many people haven’t so I think it's important to do what we can to keep shops and activities within the city centre."

Plans have been shared by the retailer for 350 more Argos stores in Sainsbury’s and Argos collection points to open in supermarkets and convenience stores by March 2024.

As a result of this, the company confirmed it no longer needs as many Argos standalone stores and will close around 420 branches, including the Worcester city centre store.

A spokeswoman for Argos, said: "While these stores have remained closed, many Argos colleagues have redeployed to help in other Argos stores and Sainsbury’s supermarkets.

"We will close around a further 300 Argos standalone stores by March 2024 and are in the process of reviewing our estate."

Simon Roberts, Chief Executive of J Sainsbury plc said: "Argos sales have been strong over the past six months and we have gained almost two million new customers as people have re-connected with Argos. Over the next three years we will make Argos a simpler, more efficient and more profitable business while still offering customers great convenience and value and improving availability.

"We are talking to colleagues today about where the changes we are announcing in Argos standalone stores impact their roles. We will work really hard to find alternative roles for as many of these colleagues as possible and expect to be able to offer alternative roles for the majority of impacted colleagues."