Three Sainsbury’s cafes will close in Dorset amid culling of 200 sites

Sainsbury’s is to close three of its cafes in Dorset, according to an announcement this afternoon (March 1).

The grocery giant has released a list of cafes across the country that must remain open, despite the closure of 200 of their in-store restaurants. Of the list, only two cafes in Dorset remain open.

Food outlets at Sainsbury’s Christchurch and Castlepoint, Bournemouth, will remain open, with the other three cafes in the county not on the ‘safe list’.

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The three Sainsbury’s cafes missing from the ‘safe list’ are Weymouth – Mercery Rd, DT3 5BJ, Poole – Alder Park, BH12 4BA and Ferndown – 597 Ringwood Rd, BH22 9AL.

The mirror reports that Sainsbury’s has said branches will close in April, as part of a transformation plan with coffee chain Starbucks. It also means that hot food counters in 34 branches will be removed

The supermarket chain also announced plans to close hot food counters in 34 stores and “simplify” its bakery counters in 54 stores.

Chief executive Simon Roberts said the channel was “absolutely committed” to supporting affected staff members.

The chain said around 2,000 colleagues were informed today of their 30-day consultation period. Affected staff will be given priority for vacancies in Sainsbury’s stores and will be encouraged to explore alternative roles within the wider business.

Around 67 Sainsbury’s cafes will remain open as Sainsbury’s Advisors roll out their plans.

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The measures are part of a wider transformation of the Big Four grocer’s food hub, which will see it transform its dine-in, take-out and home delivery offerings across 250 stores.

This includes closing cafes and replacing them with chains such as Starbucks and Gourmet Burger Kitchen.

Around 30 Starbucks coffees will open in stores over the next year, bringing the total number of Starbucks in Sainsbury’s supermarkets to 60.

Simon Roberts, CEO of Sainsbury’s, said: “We are totally focused on improving what we can offer our customers and at the same time we are working hard to simplify our business.

“As we go through this transition period, we have made the difficult decision to close 200 of our cafes next month.

“We have spoken to all colleagues affected by these changes today and we are absolutely committed to supporting them in any way we can during this uncertain time. Of course, we understand that this is very troubling for our colleagues, but we must continue to adapt our business to ensure that we provide customers with the best possible food and drink at affordable prices.”

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The move impacts 500 workers in business operations, human resources, supply chain and logistics, technology, general merchandise and apparel functions.

The chain’s headquarters in Holburn in central London has also seen its space reduced by two floors.

The restriction also included the closure of its online fulfillment center in Bromley-by-Bow, east London, affecting a further 650 positions.

The Big 4 grocer said the move was to free up cash to reinvest in a new “Food First” strategy.

“Our new plan puts food first and will create a simpler, more agile and more efficient business,” said Sainsbury’s chief executive Roberts.

“The money we save will allow us to invest in what really matters to customers: lower prices, exciting new products and the most convenient ways to shop.

“I know change is hard, but to do the best job possible for our customers, it’s essential that we adapt.

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