Toys R Us in Oldbury facing demolition to pave way for new shops
A former Toys R Us in the Black Country – shut down after the toy chain collapsed – will be demolished under plans to make way for a new retail development.
The large shop, off Birchley Island in Oldbury, closed its doors earlier this year.
A retail development, taking up some of the car park, would replace it with well-known shopping outlets involved, the Express & Star understands.
Members of the West Midlands Combined Authority were approached over the proposal this month as the unnamed developer wants backing on the scheme.
Although it has not been publicly disclosed, the project involves knocking down the old Toys R Us store.
Walsall Council leader and member of the WMCA investment board, Councillor Mike Bird, welcomed the move.
He said: “We have been approached by a private developer which wants to redevelop the site, bringing in jobs into the town and regenerate a disused area.
“They wanted our backing, and I was happy to give mine.”
Toys R Us closed the store in Oldbury in April. The Oldbury store was opened in the 1990s.
The toy chain collapsed with the loss of 2,000 jobs. It ceased to trade online in February.
A decision was taken to close all the chains’ 106 stores after joint administrators Moorfields failed to find a buyer.
It took over administration when the company was unable to pay a £15 million tax bill.
It has a car park and is next to a McDonald’s restaurant.
Toys R Us branches lost in the region as part of the cuts included shops at the Merry Hill Centre in Dudley and at Stafford’s Queens Retail Park – which opened only last year.
A branch at Meole Brace Retail Park in Shropshire and at St Andrews in Birmingham also shut.
Travellers camps have illegally set up at the Oldbury site in the past, including one earlier this year.
Council and police teams had to work together to move the camp on from the sprawling car park at the site.
Members who set up camp on the site of the Oldbury store were banned for three months from entering Sandwell after refusing the councils requests to leave.
New powers brought in to tackle unauthorised encampments were used for the second time in a month in a bid to move the travellers on.