Majestic Wine is to close its Vinopolis store, and will be replaced by a new Laithwaites outlet in 2010.

The 5,000sqft site near to London’s Borough Market, was the only Majestic store to allow customers to purchase single bottles of wine.

The move comes as Majestic and Vinopolis failed to renegotiate their ten year lease agreement.

‘When the lease ran out, we didn’t renew it because we were unable to reach acceptable commercial terms with Vinopolis,’ a spokesperson for Majestic told decanter.com.

‘This doesn’t affect our plans for expansion target of 250 stores. It’s important to us that we transfer as many of our customers as possible and cater for them via our existing London stores.’

Laithwaites and Vinopolis will now have an ongoing contract of up to 10 years, and are aiming to open the new store in January 2010 following refurbishment of the interior of the current store, including the layout.

Laithwaites founder, Tony Laithwaite, said the move was his ‘idea of heaven’.

‘It’s very exciting for me – Southwark is quite a buzzy part of town. I look forward to appearing there regularly.’

Laithwaites Wine is part of the Direct Wines Ltd and currently has ten retail stores across the UK.

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Written by John Abbott