Job cuts at Derbyshire designer outlet as food court partly shuts for revamp

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A popular Derbyshire retail village is set to close part of its food court for redevelopment this summer and, while the disruption is mostly expected to be temporary, dozens of workers have reportedly lost their jobs.

Bosses at McArthurGlen East Midlands Designer Outlet near Junction 28 of the M1, South Normanton, have yet to reveal the full extent of their plans but have told the Derbyshire Times there will be imminent changes.

A spokesperson for McArthurGlen said: “We can confirm there are plans to redevelop the centre food court which will result in the short-term closure of some food and beverage brands whilst works are carried out.

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“The new food court development will provide a mix of new and exciting restaurant brands when works are complete in the autumn.”

Changes are afoot at the McArthurGlen East Midlands Designer Outlet. (Image: Google)Changes are afoot at the McArthurGlen East Midlands Designer Outlet. (Image: Google)
Changes are afoot at the McArthurGlen East Midlands Designer Outlet. (Image: Google)

Food outlets at the centre include Burger King, Subway and Harry Ramsden’s – however only one of those companies has so far responded to questions from the Derbyshire Times.

It is understood that between 40 and 60 staff were told last month that they were being made redundant, despite assurances to the contrary earlier in the year, but none of the employers involved have clarified the number of workers affected nor their current employment status.

A spokesperson for Burger King could only recommend an alternative outlet in Staffordshire, saying: “We can confirm that our McArthurGlen restaurant will be closing on June 2. Customers can still enjoy Burger King at our Cannock Gateway Retail Park.”

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The redevelopment could be related to two planning applications submitted to Bolsover District Council in 2022, both later approved, for external alterations to the food court and construction of a ‘play barn’ at its rear.

The play barn is described as a new building with soft play facilities and dining tables, accessed from the food court via an external pathway.

The application stated: “The proposed development will not affect the protected employment status of the site and will not result in a loss of employment; with a small gain in employment as specialist staff may be required.”

Part of the land involved in those applications was classed as being within the HS2 safeguarding zone – reserved for possible construction purposes – so the cancellation of the high speed line may have now allowed the plans to progress.

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