The owner of land which is home to a ‘much-loved' supermarket in York has confirmed that the site is set for redevelopment in 2025.

As reported in The Press, Sainsbury’s said its store in Foss Bank will close at the end of its lease in January 2025.

The owner of the site said that both the supermarket lease and the lease of neighbouring GO Outdoors will lapse at the same time.

A petition, which began on March 29, secured 813 online signatures at the time of writing and called on the supermarket’s landlord to ‘re-consider their decision and renew the lease to Sainsbury’s in the interests of local residents and the supermarket’s staff.’


Comments included how the store closure will impact the local community, how good relationships have built up between customers and staff over the years, and how accessible the store is, especially for those without access to a car.

Some people raised concerns about the future use of the land, with many highlighting the potential for new housing developments on the Foss Bank site.

After the announcement from the supermarket chain in March, The Press spoke to customers who travelled to the store by car, bicycle and on foot.

'I think it’s tied up in the community and in The Groves'

Many had been using the store for years since its opening in 1984, including those who were helping their relatives who no longer drove to do their weekly shop.

York Press: Labour's Guildhall Ward councillors Dave Merrett, Rachel Melly and Tony Clarke outside Sainsbury's Foss Bank superstoreLabour's Guildhall Ward councillors Dave Merrett, Rachel Melly and Tony Clarke outside Sainsbury's Foss Bank superstore (Image: Supplied)

Local Labour councillors in York’s Guildhall ward launched the petition, calling the Sainsbury's branch a much-loved essential amenity and calling on the landlord to think again.

When asked by The Press why customers were so loyal when other supermarkets were close to the store, Councillor Tony Clarke said: “I think it’s tied up in the community and in The Groves, which has lower car ownership.

“Quite a lot of the regulars also know the long-standing members of staff and this connects them to their local shop.

“Nearly 200 people signed the petition in one weekend either online or on paper.

“The closure will affect staff as well.

“Some may lose their jobs and others transferred to different stores with less suitable working arrangements for them.”

He added: “We need housing in the city, the universities are expanding – the question is should housing take the place of a community asset and that’s how people view this store in the community.”

In January, The Press reported that GO Outdoors, which occupies another site on the Foss Bank development, was progressing its relocation plans to Vangarde Shopping Park on the outskirts of York.

A spokesperson for Argo Real Estate, the owners of the Foss Bank site since 2017, said: “Following discussions with all parties, the leases for Sainsbury’s and GO Outdoors end in January 2025 and they will both be vacating the site.  

“This is a key gateway site for York and our vision for this exciting transformation will result in its regeneration including the introduction and improvement of public realm and further enhancement of the local environment, as well as the potential for retail space within the masterplan.

“Public consultation on the regeneration of this large brownfield site will begin in the coming weeks. 

"Further details of how the local community can get involved in shaping these plans will be announced shortly.” 

A spokesperson for Sainsbury’s said: “In March we shared the difficult news that our York Foss Bank supermarket will close next year when the lease expires.

“We understand our landlord intends to regenerate and redevelop the site and we are required to vacate the store in January 2025.

“We would like to thank our loyal customers and the local community for all the messages of support we have received since the news was announced.

“We understand this will be an unsettling time for everyone this affects, and we remain committed to doing everything we can to help them, including offering opportunities to our colleagues to redeploy to alternative roles within Sainsbury’s.”