With the redundancies being described as ‘devastating’ for the town, The Co-operative Food have confirmed they may look to return with a smaller convenience store.
Councillor Sean Marshall says 11 fulltime jobs and 31 part-time jobs are affected by the sale of the Butts Street site to Aldi, and having contacted Partnership Action for Continuing Employment said: “PACE went in on Monday and delivered packs to all the staff in Annan.
“They’ve arranged a presentation that’s been offered to all the staff, and they’re going to work with the storemanager and HR department tomake sure they have the full created support.”
And he added: “I’ve also asked Dumfries and GallowayCouncil if they can actually approach Aldi, and just ask them if, with a trained workforce there, whether they’d continue taking on existing Co-op staff who wish to be employed by Aldi.”
Aldi last week confirmed the purchase of the site, indicating a store is ‘set to open in 2015’, but not stating whether they would occupy the existing building or new premises.
The Co-op meanwhile confirmed the sale of the store, affecting what they put at 41 jobs.
Councillor Marshall had expressed dismay last week at the loss of jobs, and said: “Forty-two jobs in a town the size of Annan will have a devastating impact on the town; it goes without saying.
“The Co-op are still very successful across Scotland and have values that are admired in terms of fair trade, etc.
“And the Co-op is more than just a store in Annan — it’s an institution, and for close to 100 years there’s always been a Co-op in Annan, and I can remember when I was younger theremust have been three different Co-shops, so it’s the end of an era.”
However, The Co-operative Food have now indicated they would consider a return to the town.
A spokesman said: “We would be interested in having a convenience store sized outlet in Annan subject to getting the right location.
“There is nothing suitable being progressed at the moment although we are still on the lookout for opportunities.”