Traders on a town centre street in Weymouth are worried about the future after a reduction in footfall caused by the closure of Wilko.

It was the biggest shop on Westham Road and traders say it was a big driver of footfall, with its absence causing a noticeable decrease in business.

The Wilko store on Westham Road closed on Thursday, October 5. The hardware and furnishings retailer tumbled into administration in August after it came under pressure from weak consumer spending and debts to suppliers.

Dorset Echo:

Chris Simmons, owner of Nostalgia Unlimited on the street, says he has seen a drop in footfall in his shop.

He said: "There is definitely been a reduction in footfall since the store closing down. Anyone on the street could tell you that.

Dorset Echo: Chris SimmonsChris Simmons (Image: Cristiano Magaglio)

"I am worried about the state of the street. A drop in footfall is never good.

"I definitely miss having it (Wilko) there. It was a convenient shop and the staff were nice. People used to go there to finish their shopping and would pop into us.

"I am hopeful that they will re-open it. It is sad that it is gone."

Dorset Echo:

Pete Chamberlain, the owner of Quayside Leather, said: "There has been a very noticeable drop in footfall. Easily fifty per cent, and it is that time of year (winter) which doesn't help.

"It has caused a big problem. Takings are down for sure.

"Wilko was super popular. I can hear people walk past here saying it is not the same without it. I don't think people realise how many people used that shop.

"It is not just that but, the car parking fees don't help. A lot of local people stopped coming in during the summer because of the fees."

Read more: Shoppers saddened at news that Weymouth's Wilko will close

Dorset Echo:

Barry Barnes, the owner of Direct Moves Estate Agents said: "There are just less people in the street, less people walking past. It (Wilko closing) has reduced the profile of the road. 

"It would be nice to see something else quickly take it over because you don't want to see premises, especially of that size, sit empty."

Dorset Echo:

Wilko was originally founded by James Kemsey Wilkinson in Leicester in 1930 and employed 12,500 workers across the UK before its collapse.