IT is the end of an era as Malvern's high street is set to lose one of the nation’s most iconic brands.

Boots on Church Street will reportedly close for good on March 11.

The announcement has been met with dismay by residents, many of whom are concerned about what this means for the town centre.

Sarah Weston, who works at Malvern St James Girls’ School, said: “We need the ‘Great’ brought back to Malvern because honestly if I was a visitor, apart from the hills and a few shops, I would be very disappointed and tourism is much needed!”

Malvern Gazette: Boots' lease for the Church Street unit runs out in MarchBoots' lease for the Church Street unit runs out in March (Image: Google Maps)

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Another local, Lynette Webster, found out about the closure when picking up a prescription for her daughter.

“It’s awful, truly awful. I was so shocked when they told me,” she said.

“I wanted to cry because they are all so lovely in there.

“They are an amazing team, really knowledgeable and friendly and always very helpful.”

Lynette, a musician who lives near the Wyche Cutting, added that she is worried for the town’s older residents.

“It’s a big loss for our town and especially for those older people who can’t get down to the retail park," she said.

According to a planning application submitted to Malvern Hills District Council, the lease to Boots is set to expire in March 2023.

The landlord proposed turning the property into two separate shops, rather than one big one.

This plan was approved by councillors in February last year.

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Malvern Gazette: The Boots at Malvern Retail Park will still be openThe Boots at Malvern Retail Park will still be open (Image: Google Maps)

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District councillor Daniel Walton, portfolio holder for economic development and tourism, confirmed the closure but reassured residents that this could be a positive for the high street.

“It has been long muted that Boots would close down, in part because we have a big one now in the retail park.

“The high street is doing very well in terms of shops closing and independents taking over.

“People come to Malvern because it is full of independent shops.

“So this closure is not completely negative and not a massive surprise.”

On the plans to convert the shop into two smaller ones, councillor Walton said this was ideal for the sort of businesses the town is attracting but explained that the council is unable to influence what will take over the units.

“When the tourist information centre closed people said they didn’t want more coffee shops but all the ones that have opened have been very successful,” he said.

“High streets are changing, they are becoming more service led.

“It is not always going to be shops that come in.”

We contacted Boots for comment.