WILKO shoppers have shared their glee after the chain returned to the high street.

The retailer collapsed into administration in August, with hundreds of stores closing and thousands of staff losing their jobs.

Wilko relaunched two new stores just days ago


Wilko relaunched two new stores just days agoCredit: PA

But a number of rivals have since stepped in to take on parts of the business, including CDS Superstores, trading as The Range and Wilko.

In October, the company revealed it would relaunch the chain at sites in EnglandScotland, and Wales in a surprise move.

And the first two branches opened in Plymouth and Exeter on December 1.

One further branch in Luton will welcome in customers on December 8, with five expected to open before the end of the year.

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Wilko has since posted on its Facebook page about the two new openings saying: “Missed the news? We’re back!”

The post has notched up hundreds of likes and comments from shoppers buzzing about the brand’s return to the high street.

One said: “Good to see you back,” while another added: “Brilliant to see it make a come back.”

A third fan of the discounter said: “Just love this.”

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And a fourth said: “Cannot believe it, it’s like Christmas came early.”

It comes after the Wilko chain collapsed into administration in August this year.

A number of rivals stepped in to take on the business but a buyer could not be found and in October the retailer announced all 400 shops would close that month.

Parts of the business were carved up and shared between rival retailers though.

Poundland took on 71 former Wilko stores as part of its own expansion plans while B&M agreed to buy up to 51 locations.

Meanwhile, The Range scooped up the brand name in September, which saw the relaunch of Wilko.com the following month.

Speaking to MP’s in a Business and Trade Committee last week, the former chairwoman of Wilko said she was “devastated” at the thousands of staff who lost their jobs following the retailer’s collapse.

Lisa Wilkinson also blamed former prime minister Liz Truss‘s mini-budget as one of the contributing factors in the business’ demise.

She told the committee: “You can have the word sorry, of course I am sorry… I am sorry that we are not there supporting these people anymore.”

Wilko is not the only retailer to have struggled this year, with a number of others feeling the pinch.

Consumers are increasingly heading online to do their shopping.

Online shopping accounted for over 26% of the total retail market in the UK in 2022, according to The Centre for Retail Research, compared to roughly 10% 10 years before.

High inflation since 2022 has seen consumers’ budgets squeezed too, meaning they’re spending less on leisure purchases.

Those factors combined, it has seen a number of retailers fall into administration, including Wilko, M&Co and Paperchase.

Boots and Argos have announced plans to slash their store portfolios in the UK and Ireland too.

But it’s not all bad news and some retailers have announced plans to open sites.

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KFC revealed to The Sun it is opening a swathe of new branches across the UK between November this year and early 2024.

Meanwhile, Sainsbury’s is shaking up its portfolio, closing eight branches but opening 14 in the coming months.

You can also join our new Sun Money Facebook group to share stories and tips and engage with the consumer team and other group members.

This post first appeared on thesun.co.uk

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