Crocket the Ironmonger is to close its iconic premises after nearly 50 years in Glasgow city centre.

The move by the family firm which was founded in 1870 is part of plans to restructure the business on the back of changes in the UK retailing environment.

The company said it will be expanding its retail premises in Ayr and will continue to trade as an online retailer via its website and through its contracts division.

But Crocket's long-standing retail site in West Nile Street will close its doors, and the firm will be holding a closing down sale at the Glasgow site over the next two weeks to dispose of existing stock and shop fittings.

Crocket's Managing Director Alistair Crocket said: "We are all aware of the challenges presented by the changing retail environment and it has now come to the point where we need to adapt our business if we are to compete within this new landscape.

"It's been an extremely difficult decision to close of Glasgow premises which is one of the city's longest surviving retail outlets. However, increasing costs, high rates and parking restrictions have made it impossible for us to remain viable within a city centre premises. The Ayr location does not face such barriers so we've decided to invest in a location where we can trade profitably.

"While the restructuring will enable Crocket to have a future, it is with huge regret that we are forced to close in Glasgow and make some long-serving and loyal staff members redundant in the process.

"I would also like to thank all the customers and suppliers who have supported us and shown through the years."

Mark Houston, a partner at accountancy firm Johnston Carmichael and business adviser to Crocket, added: "This is undoubtedly a tough decision for Crocket to close its Glasgow premises but in light of the challenges being faced by many retailers within the current marketplace this restructuring will give the business a positive future and will enable it to better focus on new trading opportunities."

Few shops can claim to be "an institution" but Crocket The Ironmonger is one such business.

With its ever-changing window displays and department store layout which evokes an era when shopping was a treat, not a chore, the shop has a special place in Glasgow's retail history

The business originally operated as a basket-makers then developed into pots and pans and traditional ironmongery.

The first shop was located in Cowcaddens but was compulsorily purchased to make way for the motorway expansion, so the then flourishing company relocated to the current site of an architectural ironmongers.

Over the decades the store has expanded its range of stock to incorporate clothing, homewares and gifts, in addition to thousands of tools and DIY gadgets.

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