Marks and Spencer (M&S) is set to close four stores in April as part of a five-year store relocation plan. 

The retailer told investors last October that as part of a five-year plan it aimed to have 180 “full-line shops” down from the current 247 by early 2028. 

An M&S spokesperson said funding it would require M&S to "release development value that exists in some of its older sites across the UK".

At the same time, M&S plans to open an additional 104 Simply Food outlets as the retailer moves towards groceries over large clothing and homeware stores.

News and Star: M&S are set to close a number of stores in 2023.M&S are set to close a number of stores in 2023. (Image: PA)

In January, M&S announced it would be investing £480 million into bigger, better stores across the UK.

The retailer’s investment will generate over 3,400 new jobs across the country and aims to create a "fit for the future M&S store estate" providing a "seamless experience" for its customers every time they shop.

M&S said it planned to accelerate the five-year store rotation plan and target delivery within three years.

As part of its programme acceleration, M&S has already identified 20 new bigger, better stores to be opened in the new financial year.

M&S Chief Executive, Stuart Machin, said: “Stores are a core part of M&S’s omni-channel future and serve as a competitive advantage for how customers want to shop today.

"Our store rotation programme is about making sure we have the right stores, in the right place, with the right space and we’re aiming to rotate from the 247 stores we have today to 180 higher quality, higher productivity full line stores that sell our full Clothing, Home and Food offer whilst also opening over 100 bigger, better food sites.

"The out performance of our recently relocated and renewed stores, give us the confidence to go faster in our plan.

"Our investment in stores not only delivers a better experience for customers and colleagues, it boosts local communities with new job creation and will help us deliver a more sustainable estate in every sense.”

According to The Mirror, M&S has already begun closing some of the older stores. 

The newspaper reported two stores were closed in the past two days - one in London and the other in Edinburgh.  

A further two M&S stores - on Linthorpe Road, Middlesbrough and Carlton Street, Castleford - are also set to close by the end of April.

Here is the full list of M&S closures, revealed to date, due to take place in 2023.

List of M&S stores closing in 2023

  • East Kilbride Shopping Centre - February 25 (CLOSED)
  • Fenchurch Street, London - March 31 (CLOSED)
  • Meadowbank retail park, Edinburgh - April 1 (CLOSED)
  • Deansgate, Bolton - April 15
  • Linthorpe Road, Middlesbrough - April 15
  • Carlton Street, Castleford - end of April
  • Newport Road, Cardiff - spring
  • Eagles Meadow, Wrexham - autumn

List of M&S stores opening in 2023

While there are set to be some closures in 2023, M&S also revealed in January, the planned store openings for 2023/24.

New full line stores

  • Purley Way (expected Summer 2023)

New full line stores - relocations

  • Leeds White Rose (expected Summer 2023)
  • Liverpool (expected Summer 2023)
  • Birmingham Bullring - Autumn 2023
  • Lakeside Thurrock - Winter 2023
  • Trafford Centre - Winter 2023

New foodhalls

  • Stockport (expected Summer 2023)
  • Barnsley (expected Autumn 2023)
  • Largs (expected Winter 2023)

These planned openings in 2023/24 follow on from a number of new stores created in 2022.