A FRANCHISEE has stepped forward to save a popular shoe shop in Clacton town centre.

Top shoe chain Clarks closed its store in Pier Avenue last week, opting to leave the town.

But Essex-based businessman John Davitt applied to become a franchisee in the area and was given the opportunity to take on the Clarks name in Clacton.

The original Clarks store has now closed, but Mr Davitt will be opening the new shop in August – two doors down in Pier Avenue.

He said: “Clarks decided to leave the town but I’m excited to be able to keep the business here and make sure residents do not lose out.”

All six staff members from the former store look set to move across to the new shop.

The new premises on Pier Avenue are now being decorated and prepared, with the launch due to take place on August 4.