Scottish branches among 30 Bonmarche outlets to close sparking fears for 240 jobs

Retailer Bonmarche recently collapsed into administration. Picture: Alan Watson
Retailer Bonmarche recently collapsed into administration. Picture: Alan Watson
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Some 240 jobs are at risk as Bonmarche closes 30 under-performing stores amid a potential rescue deal for the bulk of the womenswear retailer.

The 30 branches, which employ an average of eight people each, will close down on 11 December, administrators acting for the business said, and the staff will “potentially be made redundant”. The remaining 285 stores will continue to trade, but will also be kept under review.

Administrator Tony Wright, from FRP Advisory, said: “We deeply regret that, as part of the administration process, 30 stores will close and staff may be made redundant.”

It comes a month or so after Bonmarche fell into administration, putting a potential 2,887 jobs at risk across the UK.

The store closures, including in Kirkcaldy and Perth, come as part of a potential rescue deal with Peacocks, which itself entered administration in 2012. Peacocks was bought out of administration that year by Edinburgh Woollen Mill.

However, administrators stressed that the deal still hinges on negotiations with landlords, and due diligence, and could yet fail.

“Whilst we are optimistic that a transaction can be completed, ultimately it will depend on ongoing negotiations between our preferred bidder [Peacocks] and landlords on market rents and there remains a risk that the business could cease to trade,” Wright stressed.

A spokesperson for Peacocks said: "We are working very hard to reach a deal that secures the future of the company and the greatest number of jobs. But given the unprecedented pressures the business continues to face, it is also important to recognise this cannot be assured at this time.

"We will now enter a period of advanced negotiations with the administrator and landlords to find a way forward that provides a sustainable, long-term future for the business."

READ MORE: Bonmarche collapses into administration, putting almost 2,900 jobs at risk