Online shopping has forced one of the oldest luxury jewellers in Tunbridge Wells High Street to shut down.

Payne and Son Ltd, which originally started as Payne & Son (Silversmiths) in Kent in 1790 and then opened an outlet in the town 146 years ago, has had to close its doors for goods due the growth of online shopping.

The jewellery store endured a bad Christmas and concluded it could no longer compete during times where a large proportion of sales are made online.


According to Times of Tunbridge Wells, footfall and spend was 25% lower than 2014 for Payne & Son. Sales consultant Jo Wicker told the news outlet this was caused by internet sales.

Wicker sent an email to customers stating: “It is with deep regret that I and my colleagues, Denise M. Haigh and Gill Lambert, have to inform you that, due to ongoing economic difficulties and a poor Christmas trading period, we have been left with no other option than to close the business.”

Payne & Son is set to close mid-end April 2016 once it has disposed of as much stock as possible.