Residents in Bristol react as their local Boots pharmacy announces closure plans

The closure is part of plans to shut down 300 stores across the country 
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Residents in south Bristol have reacted to the forthcoming closure of their local pharmacy. 

The Boots chemist on Symes Avenue in Hartcliffe is set to close from March next year, BristolWorld understands.       

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The closure is understood to be part of the pharmaceutical chain’s plans announced in June to close 300 of its branches throughout the UK over the next 12 months. Boots declined to comment on the Hartcliffe branch’s closure.   

Speaking to BristolWorld, residents and visitors to Symes Avenue were concerned about the impact of the closure on local people. The nearest chemist is Well Pharmacy at the Hartcliffe Health Centre, and the closest Boots is at Imperial Retail Park in Hartcliffe.    

“It’s just a bit of a shame,” said 74-year-old Gill Martin from Ashton, who was in the Hartcliffe area for a meeting.

“It’s not good for old people and women with babies. The nearest Boots is Imperial Park, but public transport is not good.”

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Shaun Brown, a full-time foster carer from Hartcliffe, agreed the closure will impact people who are unable to get to the other Boots in the area. 

“I use it quite regularly for mine and my partner’s prescriptions,” the 51-year-old said. “It went downhill years ago: the service, waiting time and the actual attitude of some of the staff.”   

Paul Ackerman, 59, who lives in St George and was collecting a prescription on behalf of his dad, said the closure will be a ‘pain in the ass’.  

“I grew up in Hartcliffe when this area was completely rundown. Once one shop goes, another will follow. My concern is for the old people.”  

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The Hartcliffe branch of Boots is part of Symes Avenue, which is home to a Morrisons supermarket and several other stores.      

The Hartcliffe branch is also not the only Boots in Bristol to be affected by the closure plans, with a petition launched to save the pharmacy in Southmead.    

Boots said earlier this year that it will shut down stores in close proximity to each other as part of plans to "consolidate" the business. The majority of branch closures are understood to be where there is an alternative Boots store within 1.2 miles (2km).   

It is understood there will be no redundancies from the 300 branch closures, with staff to be offered work at nearby stores.  

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