Booths in Hale Barns is Closing

We are sad to report that Booths supermarket will be closing down and an Asda will be taking over the location. The date it is closing is now confirmed as 7th April.

The reasons Booths has decided not to continue in Hale Barns is because the store is not profitable. The rent is apparently too costly to cover profits made on sales (some have said the rent it is £ 70,000 a month). One challenge Booths faced is that many of their customers did not do the big shop there, preferring selective shopping by buying particular specialist goods or reduced items, then going to lower cost stores for the bulk of their weekly shop. This could have been partly caused by high prices on some items, for example, a Scotch Egg at Booths Delicatessen counter was £ 3.25 - considerably more expensive than Marks and Spencer where it is £ 2.00 for a specialist Scotch Egg or £ 1.45 for 2 basic Scotch Eggs. As a result customers have commented that for some things Booths is just too expensive.

While some residents are pleased to have a discount store coming to Hale, the majority are very much unhappy. There is a large Asda in Broadheath which offers a wide range of products, and besides, Asda food can be ordered online - Booths offered something different.

The big loss is that Booths is more than just a supermarket, the cafe is the centre of the community, which many locals as well as St. Ambrose teenagers use to get together. Also, Booths offered the popular option to collect John Lewis orders at the Hale Barns store.

The new Asda is reported to be including a cafe, however employees and customers don't believe it will be as classy as Booths cafe.

Locals on social media have been commenting how they would have preferred a Waitrose or some kind of farm shop. Unfortunately Waitrose, which was originally going to open in Hale Barns in 2015 but pulled out, is owned by the John Lewis Partnership which has financial troubles. In terms of a farm shop, the venue is probably too large for an independent retailer to take on. Some say that overall the biggest winner from this change will be Marks and Spencer in Hale Village.

Here at we are disappointed to see Booths go, and will wait to see what sort of range and cafe Asda will provide in the new store.