M&S announces 495,000 sq ft distribution hub as part of transformation initiative

By James Henderson
Marks & Spencer (M&S) is set to open a new 495,000 sq ft Clothing & Home distribution centre in Welham Green (Hertfordshire) in early 2019...

Marks & Spencer (M&S) is set to open a new 495,000 sq ft Clothing & Home distribution centre in Welham Green (Hertfordshire) in early 2019, as part of the company’s five year ‘transformation programme’.

The site will be transformed into a mechanised clothing distribution centre, serving 150 stores in the South East. The former Tesco site will be operated by a third-party logistics supplier, employing over 500 people.

Additionally, M&S will cease operations at its Neasden, North London, distribution centre and transfer the work to other sites in the M&S network.

Gordon Mowat, Director of Clothing & Home Supply Chain & Logistics, said: “M&S is changing and we are transforming our stores and supply chain to better serve our customers.

“The new site in Welham will deliver better service and availability for our customers and enable us to become a faster, more agile, lower cost retailer. The location has fantastic transport links and we’re looking forward to building a great operation in Hertfordshire.

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“The decision to move operations from Neasden to other sites within our network is not one we have taken lightly, however it’s an important part of our transformation.”

The Welham Green centre will be fitted out and tested during 2018 and is expected to start operations early next year. The site will incorporate 27,000 sq ft of office space.

The site in Neasden is operated by third-party logistics specialist XPO Logistics with transport operations at the site provided by DHL. Both XPO and DHL have now entered into a period of consultation with the 380 colleagues who work on site. 

The changes are the latest in M&S’ journey to adopting a single-tier Clothing & Home distribution network.  The network currently comprises of 19 distribution centres and warehouses, including large centres in Swindon, Castle Donington and Bradford.

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