John Lewis could turn unwanted retail space into affordable homes

JOHN Lewis is considering repurposing its excess retail space into mixed-use affordable housing.

The plans came in a letter addressed to John Lewis employees from Sharon Lewis, chairman of the department store firm.

She wrote, “As we repurpose and potentially reduce our shop estate, we want to put excess space to good social use. We are exploring with third parties the concept of new mixed-use affordable housing.”

Mrs Lewis continued by revealing that she expects John Lewis to generate 60% of its business from online sales – a 20% increase to sales levels prior to the Covid-19 pandemic.