Job losses at town’s dollhouse company

A Ripley firm which manufacturers and sells dolls’ houses has relocated its warehousing operation, with the loss of 31 jobs.

The move comes after The Dolls House Emporium was taken over by internet retailer MyHobbyStore Retail in March.

The new owner has decided to shut down the warehouse at the Ripley site in High Holborn Road and relocate it to Peterborough, where it has a distribution centre.

The decision has led to 31 people being made redundant last month. MyHobbyStore has retained the factory shop and offices at Ripley, which employ 28 people.

The Dolls House Emporium was sold by Jackie Lee, who founded the business in 1979, when she retired.

Owen Davies, chief executive of MyHobbyStore Retail, said: “We got involved with The Dolls House Emporium to build on the foundations that Jackie laid and take the brand forward, which is something we are committed to.

“We aim to maintain the company’s position as brand leader in the dolls’ house market, and continually look at new ways to improve our offering in terms of product quality, value for money and customer engagement.”

MyHobbyStore Retail is London-based. Its business covers radio control supplies, model railways, die-cast models, craft supplies and other related hobby products.

The firm said it was now designing new products for its autumn catalogue, to be published in September.