Dorset car dealership pull out of town centre site in Dorchester

Dorset car dealership pull out of town centre site in Dorchester

CLOSED: Lanehouse Suzuki and Lanehouse Vauxhall at The Grove in Dorcheste

REAL SHAME: Chamber of Commerce president Matt Pye

First published in News Dorset Echo: Photograph of the Author by , Dorchester reporter

A DORSET car dealership has pulled out of its prominent town centre site in a shock closure in Dorchester.

The Lanehouse Group has closed its Lanehouse Suzuki and Lanehouse Vauxhall dealerships and service centres in the county town.

The site at The Grove was closed in what bosses have described as a ‘business decision’ but the premises in Weymouth and Bridport are staying open.

No staff have yet lost their jobs with the company although the company says that there may be ‘casualties’ further down the line.

Business and civic leaders in Dorchester said that they were disappointed that the site was closed but hoped that someone else would take it over.

Managing director and founder of the firm Peter Avery said the company reached an agreement with its landlords and pulled out of the site.

He said: “We decided to relocate and concentrate on our Wey-mouth and Bridport operations.

“It was a business decision.”

Mr Avery added that, while no employees had yet been put out of work and staff would be fully informed of developments, there could be some ‘casualties’ as a result of the move.

He said: “We have not got down to the final nuts and bolts of it yet.

“There may be some casualties but we are not fully aware of the numbers at the moment.”

The Lanehouse Group was established in Weymouth in 1973 and first expanded to Bridport in 1997.

It opened the Vauxhall service in Dorchester in 2008 before adding the Suzuki dealership two years later.

Before the closure of the county town site, Lanehouse employed around 50 staff.

President of Dorchester and District Chamber of Commerce Matt Pye said it was a shame to see Lanehouse pulling out but he was confident the site would attract someone else to come in.

He said: “From the chamber’s point of view it’s a real shame to lose a business like that.

“We hope it will be replaced by somebody of equal standing and it gives an opportunity for somebody else to come to the town.

“It’s a very good site and it will certainly be popular, the chamber just hopes we get a really good operator in there.”

Town councillor for the Dorchester North ward David Taylor was also disappointed.

He said: “In these times of economic turmoil it’s sad to see that as a county town we have lost two of our motor trading partners.

“I’m surprised, considering the vibrancy of Dorchester and the fact it is still an excellent shopping centre and attracts lots of people from all over the county and the country, that they have decided to close.

“Seeing as they have obviously had to move, I wish them success in the future and if they ever decide to come back that would be fantastic.”

Changing Places In Dorchester

THE loss of the Lanehouse dealership comes on the back of a number of retail closures in Dorchester.

This month has seen Starbucks and C&H Fresh Butchers close their doors in South Street, while Stead & Simpson shoe shop has launched a closing down sale. Wellchester has been replaced by Poundland and JJB Sports is to be replaced by fellow sports retailer Sports Direct.

Other stores to close their doors over recent months include Game and Mothercare while the Town Mill Bakery and Julian Greaves health food store closed last year.

New stores to open in the town centre include Crew Clothing Co, Steam Trading Cookshop and Two Kings jewellers and pawnbrokers while Lidl opened a supermarket opposite the Lanehouse dealership at The Grove.

Comments (10)

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10:12am Thu 1 Nov 12

max planck says...

Knock the building down and build a big roundabout at that very dangerous junction
Knock the building down and build a big roundabout at that very dangerous junction max planck
  • Score: 0

10:32am Thu 1 Nov 12

snowleopard says...

Must be something wrong with site as before Lanehouse the firm of Aztec which sold Renaults closed very sudden.
Must be something wrong with site as before Lanehouse the firm of Aztec which sold Renaults closed very sudden. snowleopard
  • Score: 0

10:41am Thu 1 Nov 12

PortlandYoof says...

Not a massive inconvenience for anyone local who owns a Vauxhall/Suzuki really, as there is another dealership in Weymouth which services Suzuki and VX anyway.
Not a massive inconvenience for anyone local who owns a Vauxhall/Suzuki really, as there is another dealership in Weymouth which services Suzuki and VX anyway. PortlandYoof
  • Score: 0

11:40am Thu 1 Nov 12

HonestLocal says...

I blame it on the landlord the cost of renting this building and land is very over priced no wonder company's keep closing down. I wouldn't want it especially with the landlord living upstairs checking up on me all the time...
I blame it on the landlord the cost of renting this building and land is very over priced no wonder company's keep closing down. I wouldn't want it especially with the landlord living upstairs checking up on me all the time... HonestLocal
  • Score: 0

11:56am Thu 1 Nov 12

misterm says...

Hardly a Town Centre site. It is about as near the edge of town as it could be!
Hardly a Town Centre site. It is about as near the edge of town as it could be! misterm
  • Score: 0

2:12pm Thu 1 Nov 12

Alsopinion says...

Lanehouse group in trouble? wonder if its due to poor customer service , overcharging for work and charging for work not requested ? Yes im speaking from bitter experience.
Lanehouse group in trouble? wonder if its due to poor customer service , overcharging for work and charging for work not requested ? Yes im speaking from bitter experience. Alsopinion
  • Score: 0

5:23pm Thu 1 Nov 12

CoogarUK.com says...

Not the first car dealer to cease trading on this site, so hardly shocking,is it? Echo sensationalism at its worst.
Not the first car dealer to cease trading on this site, so hardly shocking,is it? Echo sensationalism at its worst. CoogarUK.com
  • Score: 0

7:02pm Thu 1 Nov 12

leo210856 says...

Hey I`ve a good idea with all these shops closing (and the Echo havent listed anywhere near them all) There are 5 empty shops in lower South Street and 3 in each of the two arcades.
Its so simple lets build a load more shops and throw lots of ratepayers money at it.
Goodness me I am suprised that no one else has though about it!
Hey I`ve a good idea with all these shops closing (and the Echo havent listed anywhere near them all) There are 5 empty shops in lower South Street and 3 in each of the two arcades. Its so simple lets build a load more shops and throw lots of ratepayers money at it. Goodness me I am suprised that no one else has though about it! leo210856
  • Score: 0

8:03pm Thu 1 Nov 12

ThePortlandOne says...

If i post a comment here i must abide by the Echo's terms and here they are.

"Remember you are personally responsible for what you post on this site and must abide by our site terms. Do not post anything that is false, abusive or malicious. If you wish to complain, please use the ‘report this comment’ link."

So as the local tabloid surely you must abide by these rules.
If i post a comment here i must abide by the Echo's terms and here they are. "Remember you are personally responsible for what you post on this site and must abide by our site terms. Do not post anything that is false, abusive or malicious. If you wish to complain, please use the ‘report this comment’ link." So as the local tabloid surely you must abide by these rules. ThePortlandOne
  • Score: 0

7:27am Fri 2 Nov 12

thetiger says...

They sold Vauxhalls, not a lot more to say really.......
They sold Vauxhalls, not a lot more to say really....... thetiger
  • Score: 0

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