A north-east shopkeeper has revealed his “personal sadness” at shutting up his landmark shop after more than 110 years in business.
Kelly of Cults closed its bakery section on Friday with the loss of 20 jobs.
The remainder of the shop, which opened in 1902 and has been operated by the Kelly family ever since, is being taken over by Sainsbury’s in the middle of next month.
The North Deeside Road supermarket will continue to sell bakery goods but they will be bought in from other bakers locally.
Work on the new Sainsbury’s store will begin as soon as Kelly’s closes, however the family will remain owners of the building.
The move means that from next month, the Kelly family, who also used to own bakery shops in Aberdeen, will only operate the Costcutter store in Insch.
Managing director Nicholas Kelly said it marked the end of a chapter for the Cults store, which has been in his family for four generations.
He said: “The bakery closed on Friday but we will still be selling bakery items from other locally bakeries until we close next month.
“While it is sad that the jobs have had to go, the decision to close the store was nothing more than a pragmatic business decision.
“The family decided to rent out the property to another retailer rather than run it ourselves.
“We had a number of bakery shops in Aberdeen but they have all had to close and are being rented out.
“The overwhelming response from our customers has been one of sadness that the shop is closing and I certainly feel personal sadness about it too.
“It really is the end of a chapter.”
Mr Kelly said the family felt Sainsbury’s was the only supermarket that could maintain its high standards.
Sainsbury’s acquisition surveyor Andrew McPhail said the firm has tried to retain as many jobs as possible.
He said: “From the outset Sainsbury’s has worked hard to retain as many of the Kelly of Cults employees, as we are fully aware of the long-standing retail tradition that has been established by the Kelly family and their dedicated staff that support them.”