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H&M closes all of its UK stores for at least two weeks

Lauretta Roberts
21 March 2020

H&M will close all of its UK stores for at least two weeks as the COVID-19 Coronavirus crisis escalates.

The Swedish fashion giant said the shut-down would take place from close of business this evening. It has said it would review the situation after two weeks and then decide next steps based on information from the Government and World Health Organisation.

H&M, whose brands also include ARKET, & Other Stores, COS and Weekday, has already closed stores in Germany, the US, Canada, Belgium and Portugal this week. Those markets followed shut-downs in Switzerland, Greece, Slovakia, Lithuania, Peru, Ukraine, the Philippines, Malaysia and Cyprus. The Governments of France, Italy and Spain have enforced the shut-down of all non-essential retail.

In more positive news 500 stores out of 516 in China have now re-opened as the outbreak comes under control there. "Sales in China have gradually started to recover as the situation in the country has improved," the group said in a statement.

Here in the UK the Government has yet to enforce a shut-down of non-essential retail in the UK but many stores have already take the decision to protect staff and customers and because footfall has plummeted as the public is urged to stay at home. Arcadia, John Lewis, Urban Outfitters, Abercrombie & Fitch, Selfridges, Harrods and Harvey Nichols are among those to close their stores with most suggesting the move was for at least two weeks and others simply saying the move was for the "foreseeable future".

Today the NHS confirmed that the UK death toll from the Coronavirus has jumped by 53 cases to 233. The patients ranged in age from 41 and 94 years old and all are said to have had underlying health conditions.

For more COVID-19 related stores, visit our dedicated content hub.

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