BHS set to leave high street as final stores close

The last BHS stores will close today. Picture: Michael Gillen

The last BHS stores will close today. Picture: Michael Gillen

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Department store BHS is expected to disappear from the high street today as its last stores close, ending 88 years of British retail history.

Administrators to the department store chain are set to shut 22 stores, the last of more than 150 branches nationwide.

Duff & Phelps and FRP Advisory have already overseen 141 closures over recent weeks, including BHS’s flagship Oxford Street store in London’s West End.

The department store’s collapse in April has affected 11,000 jobs, 22,000 pensions, sparked a lengthy parliamentary inquiry and left its high-profile former owners potentially facing a criminal investigation.

Retail billionaire Sir Philip Green has borne the brunt of the public fallout, having been branded the “unacceptable face of capitalism” by furious MPs.

• READ MORE: Glasgow St Enoch BHS store to close for good

Sir Philip owned BHS for 15 years before selling it to serial bankrupt Dominic Chappell for £1 in 2015.

Sir Philip has come under fire for taking more than £400 million in dividends from the chain, leaving it with a £571 million pension deficit and for selling it to a man with no retail experience.

Veteran Labour MP Frank Field has asked the Serious Fraud Office (SFO) to launch a formal investigation into the pair to ascertain if any criminal wrongdoing occurred during the sale of the chain and throughout their respective ownerships.

It has also emerged that Mr Field is probing Sir Philip’s Arcadia retail empire, which includes Topshop.

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