A BUYER has been found for the former Thatchers Furnishings building in Huddersfield town centre.
The deal was announced by administrators of the company, which collapsed in September last year in the face of tough trading conditions, with the loss of about 20 jobs.
Joint administrator Peter Sargent, of insolvency firm Begbies Traynor, has announced a final auction of stock from the building – amounting to more than 400 items – would be held next Thursday at the premises at Dundas Street.
The shop closed last October after administrators failed to find a buyer for the business.
Thatchers’ managing director Darran Chappell, has now formed a new company, Thatchers of Huddersfield Ltd, which is trading from a former mill opposite the Great Northern Retail Park on Leeds Road.
Mr Sargent declined to name the buyer of the Dundas Street premises, where furniture in six showrooms covered four floors.
He said: “It is good news that the building has been sold. It shows there some interest in commercial property in Huddersfield. It is probably the biggest retail building to be offered for sale in the town centre for some time.
“It is a grand building in a good location and it has a lot going for it. Whether it will be used for retail or something else, we don’t know at present.”
An initial retail sale of stock ran alongside the unsuccessful efforts to sell the business as a going concern. Mr Sargent said supplier and third party claims had been addressed during the intervening period. The remaining stock to be sold next week is being auctioned by property agents Walker Singleton on behalf of the administrators.
Items range from long case clocks to chess sets and include lounge, dining, bedroom and occasional furniture, carpets, pictures and ornaments together with the contents of the top-floor Rafters cafe and the warehouse and office assets.
Howard Eastwood, a director at Walker Singleton, said: “There are over 400 lots in the auction and from the range of stock we anticipate interest will be generated not only from private buyers but also private landlords, developers and resellers.”
He said: “The store was synonymous with retailing quality furnishings and with lots carrying retail values of up to £6,000 the opportunity to secure an auction bargain exists for everyone.”
The original Thatchers was founded in 1940 by John Herbert Thatcher who had been a carpet fitter.
It began in Queen’s Mill Lane and moved to its present premises in the early 1960s. Trevor Chappell joined the business in 1954 as an apprentice, took over in the late 1960s and was succeeded in turn as managing director by his son Darran.