April Fool: Sunderland barber shop eyes move to Marks and Spencer's store in city centre

This would be a bold move - if it wasn't an April Fool
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Scolli's Naomi Quinn Scolli's Naomi Quinn
Scolli's Naomi Quinn

Were you fooled? This was the Echo's April Fool story for 2024. You can read about some others from over the years here, and about Sunderland's greatest ever hoax here.

A much-loved Sunderland barber shop could be about to move into bigger premises in the city centre.

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Practising fine barbering and hairdressing for 44 years, Scolli's is now eyeing a surprise move from its Chester Road home to the soon-to-be vacant building by Marks and Spencer on High Street West.

Recently, M&S announced that it would leave the store for a new outlet at The Galleries shopping centre in Washington.

It has come to the attention of Scolli's plc directors that an opportunity may have arisen as their company is ripe for expansion.

Loyal customers are said to be behind the proposal, although Scolli's top brass are yet to speak face-to-face with their Marks and Spencer counterparts.

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Filling the space in the High Street West building might seem problematic for a barber shop. However, early thoughts are to extend from three chairs to four on the ground floor, which could also accommodate a more expansive range of magazines on a larger coffee table.

On the first floor would be ladies' hairdressing. Discussions are also underway for a second kettle and a fridge. A radio has already been secured.

On the second floor would be office space for Scolli's admin team; although a third kettle is not thought to be an option and admin would need to boil their water downstairs.

Long-term Scolli's chief executive Naomi Jenkins said: "It's exciting, but we must stress that we are in the early stages of this.

"Some of our customers have suggested that we should look at the empty Debenhams building as an option too; but that would be absurd. It's far too big."

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