Bristol independent gift shop to close, citing CAZ among factors

Frankly at Wapping Wharf is set to close at the start of 2024Frankly at Wapping Wharf is set to close at the start of 2024
Frankly at Wapping Wharf is set to close at the start of 2024 | Frankly
Frankly's Helen Symonds says the Clean Air Zone has been 'really bad' for her business

A Bristol independent gift shop has announced plans to close, citing the Clean Air Zone as a contributing factor.

Frankly, which sells ethical and sustainable gifts, has been open at Cargo in Wapping Wharf since October 2020.

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But founder and owner Helen Symonds says 'it is just not viable' to continue the store beyond the start of next year.

She wrote in a statement: "After 3 years at Wapping Wharf Bristol we have made the decision to close our bricks and mortar store (or metal and glass in our container shop's case!).

"We have ridden the pandemic, social distancing, new normals and bridge closures but with the current economic situation it is just not viable to have such a high level of out goings.

"We will hugely miss the special, supportive community that we have been part of and are excited to see the future developments down here at Wapping Wharf Bristol.

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"We will continue just online for the time being and you never know we may pop up somewhere else in the future."

Speaking to BristolWorld, Helen added that Bristol's Clean Air Zone, which was introduced in November 2022, has also led to the closure.

"The CAZ has been really bad because people can’t drive down here," she said.

"As a business owner, it costs me £9 to drive to my business. Normally I cycle, but I have to deliver stock so it’s just another expense.

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“I'm sad to be leaving the community down here and all the loyal customers but it’s right the thing to do."

A Wapping Wharf spokesperson added: "We'd like to bid farewell to the wonderful Frankly, who are closing their store here at Wapping Wharf.

"Helen, Alice and the team have been a huge part of our community for three years and they'll be massively missed, but don't worry - you can still shop their wonderful range of ethical and sustainable gifts, accessories and more on their website."

Frankly is due to close on January 7.

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