CRAIG Tizard is leaving his role as store manager of Debenhams Weymouth for a new challenge.

He will be managing the department store’s Salisbury branch.

Mr Tizard, who is originally from Weymouth, became store manager of Debenhams Weymouth in 2012 and will continue to keep a hand in the management of the New Bond Street shop by helping out with the current team.

He said the new move will give him a better work life balance as his new job is closer to home. “I’m delighted to continue my journey in Debenhams with a new challenge of Salisbury which was modernised in 2012.

“This move will also help my life and work balance in seeing my wife Salina and two-year-old son Kian.

“The support from my wife and the Debenhams team in Weymouth has been fantastic and I have enjoyed my 18 months back in my home town,” he said.

The Weymouth team will now be headed by Kate Hope until a new manager is in place.

This year marks 15 years since Debenhams Weymouth first opened its doors in 1999.

It currently employs 102 people and more than 10 per cent of staff have been there since the shop opened.

The store continues to trade well, Mr Tizard said.

“The Weymouth market is a resilient market, even though we didn’t have the Olympics last year like in 2012, we are still getting really good footfall.”

Proving particularly popular with Weymouth customers are Debenhams’ in-store furniture offers and the ‘click and collect’ system, Mr Tizard said.

Mr Tizard has been a director on the board of the Weymouth Business Improvement District (BID) and supports the initiative to improve Weymouth town centre. He said: “Everything that’s come out of the Weymouth BID so far has been really positive. The Victorian Shownight was a real success.

“Weymouth needs to be competitive as a town and it would be nice to see fewer empty shops.

“Unfortunately there are still a number of empty shops and the percentage there is in Weymouth seems to be in line with the rest of the country.

“We’ve got to look at what attracts people into a town and one of the key things putting people off is parking costs.”

This month Debenhams is supporting Help for Heroes with the whole of March devoted to raising money for the charity. In the opening weekend the store raised £480 towards the charity.