Church's china shop in Northamptonshire to close

One of Northamptonshire's oldest stores is to close after trading for more than 150 years.

Church's china, which has outlets in the Ridings Arcade in Northampton and in Market Harborough, has gone into voluntary liquidation.

The economy and excessive pressure from online competition has been blamed for the company's demise.

The former managing director, Stephen Church, said he felt terribly sad for the staff who will lose their jobs.

Nine members of staff work at the shop.

'Indebted to customers'

Mr Church said: "Some of our staff have been with us for 30 years and their loyalty to the Church family has been fantastic.

"We are also indebted to generations of customers who have always made us feel at home at the heart of Northampton life."

The company also had an online business which did really well providing memorabilia for the royal wedding in 2011.

"Our online business has been really successful but it has not been sufficient to offset the decline in the High Street," said Mr Church

The liquidation is being handled by Marshman Price Ltd.

The company said the Market Harborough store would close with immediate effect, but the Northampton store would remain open for another seven to 10 days.

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