A popular high street name will leave the town centre on Bonfire Night this year, it has been revealed.
Marks and Spencer on Standishgate will close its doors on November 5, opening its trademark Food Hall At Robin Retail Park the next day.
Back in January, town centre residents were left reeling when the retail giant announced its departure from the high street, where it has been for generations.
The news was not received warmly by those who cannot drive and now face a taxi or bus journey to their closest supermarket.
Grand Arcade manager John Sanson said: “It is of course disappointing that Marks and Spencer is leaving the town centre.
“It will affect the Grand Arcade and it will affect the town too, of that I have no doubt.
“We do not own the building, and Marks and Spencer will have to keep paying rates on the Standishgate premises, heat them during the winter and keep them looking safe and smart.
“And we really hope that M&S will do something with that building. We would want to see another retailer move in there.
“Expressions of interest would be most welcome.”
Wigan’s high street has suffered the loss of some big household names in recent years with the most notable being Morrison’s, which closed several years ago.
Wallpaper Supplies, on Library Street, has announced its closure after 52 years of trading due to a decline in footfall, which has been attributed to the closure of Morrison’s.
Patisserie Valerie, inside Debenhams, Greenwoods, Jessops and Peacocks have all closed their Wigan branches after falling victim to changing retail trends.
While the town centre appears to be losing retailers quickly, Robin Retail Park is growing in success.
Over the past few years it has welcomed KFC, Costa Coffee, Subway and Card Factory and a Superdrug is soon to open in the former Clinton Cards unit.
Despite this, there is nothing to suggest that the site at the Grand Arcade will be closing.
Elsewhere, Morrisons announced that its Ince store has been earmarked for closure subject to a 45-day consultation period.
Following the news, speculation was rife that the supermarket chain may reopen in the M&S site on Standishgate, however this is not believed to be true.
The Makerfield Way branch closure, if it goes ahead, will result in the loss of dozens of jobs.