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Mitsubishi dealer quits on religious grounds

A former Mitsubishi retailer of the year has given up the franchise – because he didn’t want to open on a Sunday. The dealer, Mark Mitchell, is a devout Christian who, in addition to the Mitsubishi franchise at Eastham on the Wirral, also has one Lexus and two Skoda sites in the region. None of them opens on Sundays.

A spokesperson for Mitsubishi importer Colt says: “We require our network to work the same hours as their competitors, which includes Sundays. We’re disappointed, because Mark has been with us for eight years and won our Dealer of the Year award in 1997. But we respect his decision to resign from the franchise and go in a different direction.”

Gallaghers of Chester has stepped in to cover the territory, and is tipped to become the permanent franchise holder.

When contacted by AM, Mitchell said he did not want to make a big issue of the situation, and declined to comment further.

But, quoted on the Liverpool Echo’s website, he said: “Naturally we were disappointed with what happened, but there is no animosity towards Mitsubishi.

“It was a big decision to shut this showroom as we had been doing so well. But I believe employees must come first and they are behind me on this.

“We are already open six days and I do not believe it is necessary to work Sundays as well. I see Sundays as a day of rest, but equally I believe in a work/life balance which my staff appreciate.

Sunday is a significant and well-earned day off for our team to spend with family and friends. “Our business is about more than just selling cars.”

He is looking to replace the franchise with Mazda and Skoda. Neither they, nor Lexus, require retailers to work Sundays.



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