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Dobbies becomes the UK’s largest garden centre chain

The sale of Wyevale garden centres around the UK continues with the purchase of 31 stores by Dobbies for an undisclosed sum. It is the third time Dobbies has purchased centres from the rival chain and the sales process is on track to be completed by the end of June. Dobbies has welcomed all 1400 employees affected by the transaction.

The centres included in the sale are: Altrincham, Andover, Beaconsfield, Brighton, Bury St Edmunds, Cadnam, Findern, Galton, Gosforth, Hare Hatch, Harlestone Heath, Havant, Hungerford, Keston, Leicester Rowena, Lelant, Marple, Moreton Park, Northampton, Pennine, Poppleton, Royston, Rugby, Shenstone, Stratford upon Avon, Stockton, Swansea, Swindon, Telford, Thornbury, and World’s End.

Dobbies is now the largest garden centre chain in the UK with a total of 69 centres (37 of which were purchased from Wyevale) and annual sales of over £300 million.

Wyevale has sold 85 of its stores to other businesses since first announcing the process in May 2018. It retains 60 centres and operates four more under license. The business has returned to profitability and reported strong trading in the first quarter of 2019, with sales up 26 per cent year-on-year.

Dobbies CEO Graeme Jenkins said: “We are very pleased to have agreed this acquisition from Wyevale and we look forward to welcoming our new customers, as well as 1,400 new team members to Dobbies as we drive the growth of the business and deliver against our strategic plan.”

Wyevale Garden Centres COO Anthony Jones said: “We are pleased to have agreed the sale of a portfolio of our centres to Dobbies Garden Centres. I am delighted with our strong start to the year and am excited about trading for the rest of the main gardening season.”

In a separate announcement Wyevale confirmed the start of a 45-day consultation process with employees at its Syon Park customer support centre.