A car dealership in Dorchester is to close – and a supermarket is being lined up for the site.
The Loders Toyota Dealership at the Grove in Dorchester is to shut within days and the company confirmed talks are ongoing to sell the site to a major retailer.
Loders Motor Group is hoping to minimise job losses by retaining staff at their other dealerships.
With the Toyota dealership closing on April 30 talks are ongoing to sell the site, with Morrisons and Lidl confirming they are interested in opening stores in Dorchester.
Managing director of the Loders group Brian Keene said the purchases of two other garages last year had been made at a difficult time for the car industry.
He said: “In terms of timing the acquisition of the two Olds businesses was not ideal as that was a time when the industry was starting to get difficult.
“This has led us to review our current representation of the Toyota brand and consolidate the brand in one dealership.”
The Loders Motor Group purchased the Peugeot dealerships in Dorchester and Yeovil and an accident repair business at the Grove in June last year.
The group also owns a Volkswagen dealership in Dorchester, which will remain open, and Mr Keene expects the company to retain most of the 18 members of staff affected.
Keene could not confirm how many jobs will be lost and said the closure of the Toyota dealership will have no effect on the rest of the group. He said selling the site would help ensure the ‘long-term viability’ of the group’s 300-plus employees.