Blackburn's historic Mercer's Toys to close

Owner Rose Fowler has cited lack of footfall and increasing rates as the reason behind the closure of the 169-year-old business.
Publish date:
Social count:

A historic toyshop in Blackburn is set to close its doors for the last time, with lack of footfall being cited as the main reason.

Mercer’s Toys owner, Rose Fowler has said that she is being forced to draw a line under the 169-year-old business because it was no longer financially viable.

According to Fowler, turnover has dropped by 50 per cent over the last two years, while access to the store had been made difficult for many customers, owing to road closures and road works.

Mercer’s Toys moved to Blackburn’s Darwen Stret in January 2009, after the former Mercer’s store in Northgate – which had sold toys, hardware and household goods in the town for 169 years – closed.

Fowler told the Lancashire Telegraph: “I have put a lot into the business in terms of money and time. This has been a very hard decision to make. I really don’t want to do it, but it’s turned out that I have to. I feel I have no other option.”

Fowler had worked at the old Mercer’s store’s toy department for 17 years before setting up the current shop. Now, with her business rates relief due to end soon, she would have to pay an extra £2,500 a year n top of the £700 she pays every month.

Mercer’s Toy will remain open until late September to give Fowler time to shift remaining stock.

“I have had a few customers in [since the news broke] and they said it’s very sad news,” added Fowler.


Featured Jobs

Vivid Job Logo 620 x 349

Digital Marketing Executive - Toys & Games

Vivid is Britain’s biggest toy company and the 20 largest in the world. With offices across the globe, they sell an amazing portfolio of toys and games to over 60 countries. Vivid is best known for its association with blockbuster brands and is very excited about future opportunities around the world.


UK Sales Agents

Liberty House Toys have been appointed as the exclusive UK distributor for the BiOBUDDi brand, and we are pleased to introduce this new unique, innovative and exciting range of 100% environmentally-friendly toy building blocks. We are seeking experienced sales agents with existing network in the toy retail market.

Gameplan Job Logo 620 x 349

Head of Product Development & Marketing

Our client is a privately owned French toy and games manufacturer which sells through distributors in forty countries. The company develops and sells innovative electronic interactive toys and games for the educational and gaming markets, and also takes suitable licenses. To progress its successful business development a Head of Product Development & Marketing is to to recruited.

HIT Entertainment Job Logo 620 x 349

Licensing Systems Administrator

The Contract System Coordinator is a newly created role to support the deal term entry process into Mattel’s new Contract Management System for its Licensing business. The role will support the Business Teams at the Deal & Amendment phase of the contracting process and act in conjunction with the System Administration team.