Family firm Woollons and Harwood closes after 112 years

Woollons and Harwood shop in Thirsk The Woollons and Harwood store in Thirsk is due to close at Easter

A family business which has traded in North Yorkshire for 112 years is to close with the loss of 14 jobs after being repeatedly hit by thieves.

Woollons and Harwood, which has kitchenware and gift shops in Thirsk and Helmsley and a warehouse in Malton, was targeted three times last year.

Managing director Paul Woollons said stock worth a total of about £9,000 had been stolen in the raids.

Mr Woollons said the firm would finally close its doors at Easter.

'Genuinely upset'

Thieves stole about £1,000 of Crown Derby pottery from the company's Helmsley store in February 2012, said Mr Woollons.

And the firm's internet business was "destroyed" when stock worth about £8,000 was stolen in two raids on its Malton warehouse in the summer, he said.

Attempts have been made to sell the business over the past six months and the decision to close was made after no buyer came forward, said Mr Woollons.

The company, which was established in 1901, is expected to be wound up over the next three months.

The Helmsley store will close at the end of the month, with the shop in Thirsk to close by the end of March.

Mr Woollons said he was sorry to disappoint the firm's "loyal band of customers".

"I think people are genuinely upset about it. They can't believe it after so long, but you can't go on dealing with this sort of situation."

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