A CARDIFF resident has set up a petition to stop Disney stores closing outside of London which has thousands of signatures.

The multi-billion-dollar multi-national has said it plans to close all its UK stores - including the branch in Cardiff - except London's Oxford Street location this month, and move its retail arm online.

But a group of Disney fans - led by Sam Cummins from Cardiff - have banded together to try and save the stores, with a petition calling for them to be kept open so far signed by more than 15,000 people. 

Sam Cummins set the Disney store petition up with some friends of hers - Laura and Jessica Capper and Gareth Roberts - who are all Disney fans. They regularly meet up in Cardiff and always visit the Disney store together.

South Wales Argus:

The four friends have been to Disneyland Paris together, and said visiting a Disney store was a way to re-live some of that magic. 

Miss Cummins said: "Disney claim to be all about the adventure and the magic.

"They have hard-working cast members who are well versed in their Disney knowledge to be able to assist in any way possible and their stores are brightly decorated with screens showing their movies and shows, the popular catchy Disney songs playing as you shop.

"It's a whole Disney experience once you step inside. They've done wonderfully to capture that magic.

"By taking away the stores, they're leaving people with the option of either having to travel to the park, which the UK doesn't even have one of its own or buy online. There's no magic in purchasing online. While it's convenient, it strips away the experience."

Ms Cummins added: "I suffer from depression and I remember while doing some Christmas shopping in Cardiff I was feeling very bad.

"I popped into the Disney store to shop for my young niece and they were playing the Mickey Christmas films on the screens. And I just stood and watched and listened and I felt so happy and warm that I could have cried.

"I left the store in high spirits with some things for myself too. 

"The stores have such a magical impact. We can't afford to lose that. It doesn't make sense for Disney, who pride themselves on giving a magical experience to take this magic away."

South Wales Argus:

She hopes the petition will make Disney "realise their mistake".

"A lot of stores have already closed, so sadly it's too late for them," she said. "But if we can get the wonderful Disney fans of the UK to work together there's hope that we can get Disney to change their mind and bring these magical places back in the future for future generations to experience.

"We just need to show them how much the stores mean to us."

You can view the petition here.