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The Dartmouth
April 14, 2024 | Latest Issue
The Dartmouth

Campion's slated for closure, sale

The current Campion's location has been open for 17 years, according to Valentine. The building will be put up for sale when the store closes.

The original store, James Campion Inc., stood where the Gap is today, until it eventually went out of business in 1991. In 1993, part of the family that owned James Campion Inc. decided to open a new clothing store at Campion's current location on South Main Street, according to Valentine.

While James Campion Inc. was a department store, the current Campion's specifically catered to women, selling women's clothing as well as higher-end fashion and beauty products. Valentine described the store as "more of a boutique than any other kind of store."

Although the store's closing was not announced until Nov. 5, store owner Dotty Campion who moved to North Carolina several years ago has considered closing for several years, according to Valentine. Campion's son, Jay Campion, has been managing the store since she relocated.

"There are a number of reasons for why the Campions decided to close the store, but the main one was that the owner wanted to retire," Valentine said.

Although poor economic conditions have put pressure on local businesses, Valentine said that this did not play a key role in Campion's decision.

"Obviously the economy hasn't been great, but that's not why we're closing," Valentine said. "Dotty [Campion] just felt like it was a good time to phase out."

The news of the store's closing has not slowed down business, according to Valentine.

"Business has been really good, and we've been crazy busy for the last few weeks," Valentine said. "We're kind of like a family here, and it's sad to see it go, but it's time."

The store's closing is not expected to have a significant effect on other business in town, but represents "the end of an era" because the store has been a fixture on Main Street for decades, Hanover Town Manager Julia Griffin said.

"A lot of Campion's customers have been there for years, and because [Campion's has] been there a long time, they've got a loyal customer base," Griffin said. "That group of ladies will be sad, because the store fulfills a niche that isn't necessarily fulfilled by other stores."

The Campion family owns the building the store occupies, according to Valentine. No decision has been reached about what will replace the store, although Valentine said that she was "sure others would be interested" in the location.

Jay Campion did not reply to requests for comment by press time.