Tuckeys Tackle fighting to stay afloat amid 'tough economical times'

Photos: Shutterstock/Facebook.
Photos: Shutterstock/Facebook.

One of the oldest retail stores in Mandurah, Tuckeys Tackle, is rallying the community for support in an effort to keep its doors open.

Despite taking to social media earlier this month to announce they were closing down, owner John Nairn said there is still hope he could continue to serve locals and tourists at his iconic Mandurah Terrace store.

Since opening in 1910, the store has been the place to go for all anglers in the area for more than 100 years.

The family-run business has been a one-stop-shop for a wide range of fishing, snorkelling, boating and camping products, as well as personal advice and repairs, for as long as many locals can remember.

In an interview with the Mandurah Mail, Mr Nairn said he is just one of many tackling the economic pressure facing the retail industry throughout the Peel region.

After buying the store in October 2018, Mr Nairn estimated sales had gone down 30-40 per cent because "people just haven't got the money to spend".

He cited expensive rent as a major factor in his struggling business.

Mandurah is absolutely suffering, it's ridiculous.

Tuckeys Tackle owner John Nairn

"The simple fact of life is retail is absolutely down and rents have not followed - landlords are being greedy," he said.

"They haven't come back with the times.

"That's why businesses in Mandurah are going broke."

In a post on Facebook on May 6, Tuckeys Tackle said they would be closing due to "tough economical times".

"To Tuckeys' loyal customers - regrettably we are closing due to tough economical times," the post read.

"Please come in to snare our closing bargains over the coming weeks leading up to our closure."

The post was met with hundreds of comments from upset anglers around the Peel region, disappointed to see the end of their favourite fishing store and wishing them the best of luck for the future.

But Mr Nairn told the Mandurah Mail he was still hoping to keep his doors open if the circumstances allowed it.

"I'm hoping to try and survive," he said.

"I've got my accountants bashing all the numbers again so we can sit down and make a strategy."

Mr Nairn said he had already gone to great lengths to try and keep the business profitable while things got tough.

"To try and survive since, I've let my full-time workers go and I am running this shop six days a week by myself - I've been putting in a lot of hours to do that," he said.

"There used to be one full-time employee and you used to be able to employ two to three casuals all the time to actually run the shop but now it's just not there.

"I've reduced costs in labour by trying to do it all myself and this shop is three shops in one so I'm going to try and find someone to sublet to try and cover costs."

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The Mandurah Mail has recently reported on the number of retailers closing down around Mandurah, especially in the Forum just a year after the centre redevelopment.

In an interview earlier this year, Peel Chamber of Commerce manager Andrew McKerrell said there were more than 150 empty commercial properties in the City of Mandurah as of November 2018.

Mr Nairn said he hoped the right people would soon step in to encourage growth in the industry.

"Mandurah is absolutely suffering, it's ridiculous," he said.

"The real estate people aren't even really trying to help the actual business owner.

"The amount of businesses that are closing and that's not just in Mandurah - 11 fishing tackle shops have already closed just in WA.

"Us small people, we're not even able to compete. We're just scrambling for a dollar. It's just WA wide."

To keep up to date with all the latest from Tuckeys Tackle, visit the Facebook page.