Shock as Somerset butcher Gerald David enters administration

Somerset County Gazette: The empty Gerald David shop in Minehead The empty Gerald David shop in Minehead

DOZENS of jobs have been lost at a well-known chain of West Somerset butchers after the business went into administration, forcing the closure of five stores.

Shocked staff arrived for work at the Minehead branch of Gerald David Butchers in Park Street on Monday only to find administrators on the site and learn they were out of jobs.

The family firm was founded in West Somerset in 1969 and had eight branches across Devon and Somerset, including one in Dulverton and another in Taunton, which have also shut. Three of the shops have been kept open while administrators try and sell the business to a new buyer.

David Kirk, of administrators Kirk Hills, told the County Gazette: “Hopefully we will find a buyer which would mean at least some of the jobs can be saved.”

It is believed that 13 members of staff have lost their jobs at the Minehead branch with more than 50 people made redundant across the business.

Mr Kirk declined to give any further information as the circumstances surrounding the administration of the firm, which is run by boss Gerald David.

However, one former employee, who wished to remain anonymous, told the County Gazette: “I wasn't at work on Monday - I found out what had happened via Facebook.

“There were rumours flying around so I messaged one of the family members and he messaged back saying that I had been made redundant.

“We can't get hold of any managers, the phone lines have been pulled down. It's disgraceful. I suspected something was wrong a while back.”

Members of the public told the County Gazette they saw the Dulverton store being cleared out over the weekend.

The staff member added: “I know there is someone who has paid a lot of money to have a hog roast this weekend and whether they have been told or not I don't know, it's just wrong.

“We were paid on a weekly basis and therefore won't be getting paid this Friday. Who knows when we'll see any type of redundancy payment and this is all in the run-up to Christmas.”

Writing on Facebook after the news of the administration broke, Revive Minehead founder Fay Dyke said: “Our thoughts go out to all of the staff members who have lost their jobs.

“The launch of the Shop Local Loyalty Card Scheme on Saturday just goes to highlight the importance of supporting our local businesses.”

nThe County Gazette was unable to contact any members of the David family for comment on the administration.

Comments (4)

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7:43am Thu 17 Oct 13

jjjjjj/mmmmm says...

Not really surprised!
Not really surprised! jjjjjj/mmmmm

1:40pm Thu 17 Oct 13

Lulu2011 says...

Not surprised at all, it was only a matter of time. I feel sorry for the businesses that supplied them as well as the staff, they will be unlikely to get a penny from the administrators. The David's also have other business concerns which will probably continue to trade.
Not surprised at all, it was only a matter of time. I feel sorry for the businesses that supplied them as well as the staff, they will be unlikely to get a penny from the administrators. The David's also have other business concerns which will probably continue to trade. Lulu2011

2:59pm Thu 17 Oct 13

scrumpyman says...

My sympathies to the people who have lost their jobs through no fault of their own. The Gerald Davies shop in the Old Market Centre in Taunton was never busy whatever time or day that you passed it. I'm surprised they kept going as long as they did, the rent must have been horrendously expensive. I use my local butcher whose meat is excellent quality and less expensive than Gerald Davies. Maybe that's why they are still in business. It's still a shame that another local business has closed.
My sympathies to the people who have lost their jobs through no fault of their own. The Gerald Davies shop in the Old Market Centre in Taunton was never busy whatever time or day that you passed it. I'm surprised they kept going as long as they did, the rent must have been horrendously expensive. I use my local butcher whose meat is excellent quality and less expensive than Gerald Davies. Maybe that's why they are still in business. It's still a shame that another local business has closed. scrumpyman

6:16pm Thu 17 Oct 13

jbll4242 says...

Not suprised, just a shock it took so long. The poor Polish workers in a container that were charged rent, the lamb that wasnt Exmoor lamb but priced and labelled as local. The list goes on, the poor staff not told anything while the shop at Dulverton was emptied. Disgusting behaviour, loyal staff deserve better. We use a local Minehead butcher as often as we can, but never that one.
Not suprised, just a shock it took so long. The poor Polish workers in a container that were charged rent, the lamb that wasnt Exmoor lamb but priced and labelled as local. The list goes on, the poor staff not told anything while the shop at Dulverton was emptied. Disgusting behaviour, loyal staff deserve better. We use a local Minehead butcher as often as we can, but never that one. jbll4242

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