The YUSU Shop on Market Square will close at the end of this academic year, it was announced yesterday.
The YUSU Shop, previously known as Your Shop, is situated on Market Square, next to the campus hairdresser’s and NISA, the campus supermarket. It is staffed by paid students and is part of the Students’ Union’s commercial services, along with bars such as Courtyard.
In a statement issued on the University of York Students’ Union (YUSU)’s website, the union announced that it had elected not to renew its lease on Market Square for further years.
Retail on campus for YUSU has been challenging for a number of years now and we believe we have reached the point where it is no longer financially viable to continue YUSU Shop in its current form. Rising costs, changing market trends and the emergence of online and local competition have been the main factors that have led to this decision being made. The retail industry as a whole is undergoing a transformation as customers continue to move away from the traditional high street model, something that has been well documented recently in the national media.
The union intends to adapt its approach to commercial services to focus more on online provisions:
This decision, whilst difficult, is the right one for the organisation and its members. Looking forward, we have every intention to continue some form of retail including an expansion of our online services. We are aware that student demands are changing and any future retail offer will be designed with this in mind.
The statement was subsequently shared online by the Union’s Sabbatical Officers.
Students have reacted to the news that the outlet will be closed at the end of the academic year. One student told The Yorker simply: “They can’t destroy the meal deal! I won’t let them take it away!”
The news, first broken by University Radio York, comes as new catering facilities and a postal service open on Heslington East. Elsewhere today, YUSU’s President, Alex Urquhart, announced today that contactless payments “on all York buses” would come into action from 28 January.