he Debenhams flagship store on Oxford Street will not reopen from lockdown and a number of other branches will stay closed, it has emerged.
Last month it was announced Debenhams would start winding down its 124 shops after no rescue deal was agreed for the struggling chain.
It has now said six sites will not reopen from the latest national lockdown, resulting in the loss of 320 jobs.
The retailer said its administrator FRP Advisory is continuing to engage with a number of third parties regarding the sale of all or parts of the business. However, while this process continues, the firm continues to plan for the ongoing wind-down of the business.
The company said: “While it remains our intention to reopen as many stores as possible to complete the stock liquidation, which continues online, the announcement of a renewed national lockdown last week means that a number of stores where we have been unable to agree lease extensions will be permanently closed.”
The stores that will not reopen are:
In total, 320 staff will be affected by the shop closures.
The closure of the Oxford Street site will also impact Debenhams’ London head office which sits above the store. Those employees will continue to work remotely in line with Government guidance. The Taunton office remains operational.
Geoff Rowley, joint administrator to Debenhams and partner at FRP Advisory, said: “We continue to engage with interested parties over alternative proposals for the future of Debenhams, but inevitably the latest lockdown has had an effect on our plans for the wind-down of the business.”
Rowley added: “We regret the impact on those colleagues affected by today’s announcement and would like to thank all those who continue to keep the business trading in very difficult circumstances.”