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Psyche rejigs its fashion layout

Independent department store Psyche in Middlesbrough is undergoing a total overhaul that will create a new 8,000 sq ft young fashion hall and boost its menswear areas.

Clothing will be rejigged on each of the store's three floors and the company is in negotiations with Danish label Sand to open a 500 sq ft corner on the revamped menswear ground floor.

Owner and chief executive Steve Cochrane said the Sand area would be the first in a number of changes to the store, which will include moving all young fashion brands from the separate menswear and womenswear departments to the top floor to create the young fashion area.

The top floor currently houses kidswear, a record store, art gallery and homewares. This offer will be slashed to make way for an "Urban Outfitters-style" area for 14- to 30-year-olds, added Cochrane.

Kidswear will be relocated alongside the womenswear department on the first floor.

The store rejig follows a two-week feasibility assessment, which was completed by a team of external architects this week.

Cochrane said he hoped the changes would boost footfall and enhance shoppers' experience. "If you are a 14-year-old buying a pair of jeans, you don't want to be rubbing shoulders with a 40-year-old buying a suit. We want to keep them separate," he said.

Other elements of the overhaul include more novel additions to the store, such as a 3D baby scanning clinic, which was introduced last year and is available by appointment, and a juice bar to be unveiled in August. Psyche is also planning to convert back-office space on the third floor to open its first full restaurant.

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