Wellesley business buzz: Law firm gives back pandemic loan; Bank shutting branch; Didriks closing in Lower Falls; Snow plowing services

The latest Wellesley, Mass., business news:

Law firm gives back pandemic loan

NPR has an interesting story on a firm that gave back its pandemic-period Paycheck Protection Program loan even though most of these loans have been forgiven by the government. The business: Wellesley trust and estate law firm Gilmore Rees & Carlson.

The firm, which found revenue did not drop off as it feared, paid back its roughly $700K loan, plus interest. The firm’s Bob Morrill told NPR: “The analogy that comes to mind to me is like you’re throwing life preservers to people on a boat in a storm and if they don’t need it when the boat pulls back into the harbor, they ought to give the life preservers back.”

NPR found that of 11.5M PPP loans issued, only about 73,000 were repaid without requesting forgiveness—many of those were high profile outfits that would have looked bad if they didn’t. Morrill told NPR that it was actually more difficult logistically to pay back the loan than it would have been to have it forgiven.

Hat tip to reader PC for sharing this.

Bank shutting branch

The Citizens Bank branch at the corner of Washington and Forest Streets is shutting down on April 16, the day after Marathon Monday. For a business that wants to get onto that route, the space will soon be available.

The branch opened in 2017, replacing La Riviera restaurant.

Citizens will still have a branch in Linden Square next to Roche Bros.

Citizens Bank, Wellesley, Washington and Forest Streets

Didriks & Local root closing in Lower Falls

Jonathan Henke, owner of the Didriks outdoor furniture store and Local Root kitchen store just over the Wellesley line in Newton Lower Falls, has announced that the shops are closing in March. The clearance sales at the 10-year-old stores have begun.

The Belmont center version of the stores will remain open, says Henke, in a letter to the community in which he thanks all those who have supported the businesses.

We paid a visit to the stores in 2014 to post about them on Swellesley.

Hat tip to reader AT for sharing this news with us.

Snow plowing services

SPONSORED: A couple of local snow plowing services to consider: Fajardo Landscaping & Lighthouse Landscape.

snow plow feb 2015

Know of businesses coming or going in Wellesley? Let us know: theswellesleyreport@gmail.com