A HUSBAND and wife forced to move their electricals shop three times in two years say they hope they can now start getting their lives back on track.

Peter and Jill Hall moved M&A Electricals into Wantage's Arbery Arcade in August, after leaving their last two units because of building works.

But after almost two solid years of upheaval, stress, and lost sales, the couple have been left with £35,000 of business and personal debt.

Part of that is a loan they took out so they could give a proper redundancy payment to their general manager Joyce Robson, who they were forced to let go after 40 years.

Mr and Mrs Hall are now hoping to raise awareness of their new harder-to-find location in a bid to keep the 60-year-old business afloat.

Mr Hall, 68, who lives with his wife in Grove, said: "At the moment, because of all we've been through, the business is flat bust broke.

"The shop is never going to pay back all the debt, but hopefully we'll be able to wash our faces."

Mr and Mrs Hall bought M&A in 2002 from Derek Miller, who had founded the business with Mark Austin in 1962 as Miller & Austin (M&A).

The Halls ran the shop at the same location at 30 Market Place, next to Oxfam, for the next 13 years.

In 2015, they were forced to leave when the landlord of that building, Paul Newton, decided to carry out a major renovation, converting the upper storeys into flats.

Mr Newton gave M&A a new home at another, much smaller unit at 5–7 Mill Street, but when he decided to start renovating that building six months later, converting a single flat upstairs into two apartments, a building inspector discovered the whole building was structurally unsound and shut it down in March 2016.

This meant the couple were unable to do any trade at Mill Street, but were still paying staff wages, as well as paying their mortgage and bills at home.

In August last year, Mr Newton agreed to let M&A temporarily move back to their original Market Place unit free of charge until the repairs at Mill Street were finished.

But, as the repairs dragged on, the couple finally decided to cut their losses and moved to 8 Arbery Arcade, behind Costa coffee.

Mr Hall said: "We've only be here a month but the signs are encouraging.

"All our customers have now come back, we've reduced outgoings, and I'm almost certain we are back in an area where we are viable.

"With a bit of luck, business will continue to improve for us to be able to sort ourselves out."