herald

Friday 24 November 2017

After 76 years, spiralling rents force Richard Alan out of its historic Grafton Street store

IRISH clothing store Richard Alan is to relocate its historic Dublin shop into the basement of another store.

After 76 years of business at 58 Grafton Street the original outlet is to move in March, it has been revealed.

Employees have been told the boutique is due to be relocated to the basement of Pamela Scott, after staggeringly high rent prices became unsustainable.

Richard Alan was taken over by Sean Barron's Flairline Fashions Ltd in 2000.

But since the takeover, increasingly high rents and rates mean remaining in the current location is not viable and so the 11 employees at the Grafton Street store are set to move to Pamela Scott ahead of a March 8 opening.

Flairline has insisted that there will be no job losses and a statement released to the Herald by Scott Barron of the family-run business, said: "The Richard Alan store had its rent trebled in 2005. This, along with high rates, meant the cost base for Richard Alan to open the doors was in the region of €850,000 annually before stock, wages, insurance and other overheads were factored in.

"This along with the economic downturn has proved in recent years to be a heavy drain on the finances of the group and as a result we are viewing this relocation as a positive step forward for the company, our staff and our customers."

The company currently employs approximately 300 people in Ireland and according to the Flairline statement, the relocation is necessary to remove a major cost for the company and ensure the security of its workforce.

Richard Alan hosts a number of well-known brands, including Marc Cain, Escada and Jaeger.

The boutique has been a favourite among Irish celebrities for decades, with RTE presenter Grainne Seoige sporting their designs on the red carpet.

A relocation sale will kick off tomorrow in the existing premises and shoppers can look forward to discounts of up to 70pc.

labutler@herald.ie

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