A third generation jewellery retailer in St Neots, Cambridgeshire, is to close down after a drop in footfall left the owner with no choice. Julian Freeman, owner of high street jeweller A Freeman, has now launched a closing down sale with the store set to close its doors for the final time when all its remaining stock is sold.
The shop was first opened by Julian’s grandfather in 1920, before being taken on by his father and uncle, Peter and James Freeman, after the war. Julian joined the business in 1978 after leaving school.
Julian Freeman told local paper The Hunts Post that he believes the store is among the oldest family jewellers in Cambridgeshire and it was not a decision he had taken lightly.
He said: “There has been a real decline in footfall in the town since 2012, it has been getting worse and worse and the internet has also taken its toll on the high street.
“I have not taken the decision lightly. My children wanted me to see it through to the 100th anniversary but there is no way that is going to happen. I had to make the decision, and it was a very tough one to make.
“I never thought it would end this way but that’s the way it is now. It’s a very sad end. I’ve given my whole life to the business but I have to be sensible, I couldn’t continue to support it.”
The shop’s three staff will be made redundant upon its closure.