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Woodhouse Clothing closing down following shift in menswear market

Sophie Smith
08 March 2023

Premium menswear retailer Woodhouse Clothing has announced its closure after almost 50 years in business. 

The retailer confirmed the news on its social media and website, launching a closing down sale with brands including Polo Ralph Lauren, Napapijr, Puma, Belstaff and Diesel.

A message published by the business reads: "It's been an absolute blast, but now is the time for us to bow out. Thank you for all your support over near 50 years of delivering premium menswear to the Great British public. Stay stylish, folks."

Woodhouse Clothing

Woodhouse Clothing established its first store on London's Oxford Street in 1975. Founded by Philip Start, the brand then expanded to nine locations in London and Manchester.

In 1989, Start sold the business to Sir Philip Green. However, he bought it back in 1991 as part of a joint venture with British Fashion Council Chairman, Harold Tillman.

The menswear retailer later launched online, offering customers another way to shop at Woodhouse Clothing. In 2009, the business was then taken forward by the Clothingsites Group. According to the Woodhouse, this "widened its brand reach and built lasting relationships with both mainstream and niche brands".

The business closure follows a recent shift in the menswear market, with JD Sports offloading a raft of "non-core" premium fashion brands including Giulio, Cricket and Tessuti, to Frasers Group. The move came after a strategic review of JD Sports by its new CEO Régis Shultz, who joined the business from Al-Futtaim Group in August 2022.

Last week, menswear retailer Wellgosh confirmed the permanent closure its Leicester flagship store, ecommerce site and other retail locations, shutting the doors on over 35 years of business history. The sportswear retailer, which was acquired by JD Sports in January 2021, will see its retail spaces become Size? stores.

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