THESE are the stores that Argus readers want to see replace Debenhams in Churchill Square.

Since the permanent closure of the department store in the popular shopping centre last week, residents have been quick to suggest what chains should take its place.

Rumours circulated on social media claimed that Primark would be moving into the Brighton shopping centre.

But these were quickly debunked by The Argus, with Primark set to remain at its store in Western Road.

The Debenhams department store is still empty and there is yet to be any official word on its replacement.

READ MORE >> Primark not moving into Churchill Square, it is understood

So we asked readers what shop they would like to see take its place.


Last year, discount retailer B&M Bargains said it plans to open up to 45 stores in the financial year, as it lifted its profit target on the back of surging sales.

Knockdown prices and spacious stores helped to drive customer traffic during the lockdown period, as its stores remained open due to essential status.

The Argus: B&M is a favourite with readers B&M is a favourite with readers

The company said it has been buoyed by a “strong” first half of trading, as group revenues grew by 25.3 per cent in the six months to September 26.

It has proved popular amongst readers, with the majority tipping it to take the vacant Debenhams spot.


The homeware store has shops in Worthing, Burgess Hill and Eastbourne but is yet to add Brighton to its roster.

The Argus: WRANGLE: The Godwin Street entrance of the Wilko store

The company was deemed an essential retailer during lockdown and kept its stores across the country open.

The brand was readers second favourite choice, behind B&M.

John Lewis

In March, the John Lewis Partnership warned over further department store closures after the pandemic sent it plunging to its first ever annual loss.

The Argus: The chain is unlikely to take over the Churchill Square store The chain is unlikely to take over the Churchill Square store

The group, which also owns upmarket grocery chain Waitrose, said it did not expect all its John Lewis shops to reopen at the end of lockdown and expects results to get worse over the year ahead.

It did not say how many of its 42 John Lewis shops are under threat but it seems unlikely that they will take over the vacant Debenhams unit.

Home Bargains

The bargain retailer opened a new store in the newly-refurbished Langney Shopping Centre, Eastbourne, at the beginning of last year.

The Argus: Home Bargains opened a store in Eastbourne last yearHome Bargains opened a store in Eastbourne last year

The store was the first Home Bargains in East Sussex and only the second in Sussex – with the other trading in Bognor.

Could Brighton become the third?