Temporary Closure of 6 Thomas the Baker Shops
We have made the difficult decision to temporarily close six of our 30 branches as of Monday 6th April due to the current coronavirus pandemic. During this difficult time, the other 24 shops will be remaining open in order to provide customers with a range of bakery goods, focusing on the essentials that are most important, particularly in smaller and rural communities, areas which many of our shops service.
The shops which will be closing until further notice are:
- Captain Cook Square, Middlesbrough
- Marton Road, Middlesbrough
- Market Street, York
The decision to keep these shops closed will be reviewed at the end of May.
Other measures that we have put in place recently include reducing the minimum card spend to £1.00 to encourage cashless transactions and only allowing a limited number of people in each store at any one time – this information is displayed outside each store. In addition, stores are closing earlier than usual to allow for additional cleaning and to reduce the potential exposure time for those continuing to staff the shops.
Simon Thomas, general manager at Thomas the Baker, said: “We would like to offer our sincere thanks to our wonderful, hardworking team and our loyal customers for all their support during this very difficult time. It has been a very difficult decision to close some of our shops as we are determined to maintain a vital service to our customers during these unprecedented times. We know many people have relied on us for staples such as bread, and even the flour and yeast that we started selling when it became apparent people were struggling to source them elsewhere.
“However, our staffing levels have of course been impacted by the virus both at the main Helmsley Bakery and in store and we need to ensure the safety of those staff members who are still working and interacting with customers and colleagues every day. Thomas’ have voluntarily chosen to pay customer facing shop staff their average full weekly commission despite the fact that the shops sales have declined dramatically. Those who are furloughed will also be paid their average commission despite the fact this is not a Government requirement. We looked carefully at which stores were experiencing a lower footfall, staff shortages or where we felt needs were being met by other businesses within the town. We feel it is the right decision to close these shops at the current time but will be reviewing that decision at regular intervals.”
You can see our full list of open stores on our website here.
You can read more about our earlier response to the health crisis here.