A crane is being used to remove the last iconic signage from IKEA’s former landmark store in Coventry.
The bulky yellow lettering which has been a symbolic part of the city’s skyline for more than a decade is being removed as the Swedish flat-pack furniture retailer leaves the city.
A section of Queen Victoria Road immediately outside the seven-storey building has been barricaded off as the 100ft crane is used to detach the distinctive branding,
The lofty job was captured by Mobile Crane Services, who posted the images on Twitter today (June 26).
In a post alongside the images, the national contract lifting company said: “It’s the end of an era for Coventry, as our team remove the last of the IKEA signs.”
Clearing the site is quite a task as it has a 280,000 sq ft floor space, with room for 9,500 products.
The hive of activity to strip down the premises has also involved removing a cash-point once accessible from Queen Victoria Road.
The extraction comes after Ikea announced that it is leaving Coventry for good.
Hopes of a brief reprieve were dashed on May 22 when the Swedish furniture chain announced that the struggling city centre branch would not reopen. The store had shut temporarily in response to the Covid-19 outbreak but was already seeing out its time ahead of permanent closure in summer 2020.
The decision affects 352 jobs at the Coventry branch, though 100 new positions have been identified for workers within the company.
In March, police officers and a security guard closed the store as the chain took steps to safeguard the health and hygiene of staff and customers.
The permanent departure of the brand had been announced in February 2020, when the company said the site was not suitable for its business.
However it was mothballed ahead of time due to the coronavirus outbreak – and was not given one last hurrah as other branches reopened.
An IKEA spokesman said: “Following the news in February this year that we were proposing to close the IKEA Coventry store this summer, we recently announced that sadly the unit will not reopen to customers.
“Our IKEA Coventry co-workers have since returned to work in the store, in a safe manner, as preparations take place for the permanent closure of the unit.
“Whilst a number of co-workers have already successfully applied for new roles and others remain in a recruitment process, we are currently supporting all affected co-workers through their individual consultations.
“We continue to lead this process with the utmost care and concern and our objective remains to retain as many co-workers as possible.
“Following this process, the property will be marketed and we will look at all proposals we receive for the building and site.”