Peacocks store puts up ‘closing’ signs

The Peacock’s branch in Portishead is displaying ‘closing down’ signs.

The store at Wyndham Way Retail Park is advertising a closing down sale with up to 70 per cent off stock.

But Bristol Live understands staff have not yet been informed whether its closure is confirmed.

Edinburgh Woollen Mill, which owns Peacocks and Jaeger, was given a 10-day extension to work on a rescue plan, Bristol Live reported yesterday (October 23).

The retail giant said earlier this month it would go bust without filing for an intention to appoint administrators with the High Court, with 24,000 jobs in the balance.

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Since then, bosses have started closing 50 stores with 600 job losses across the group, while they work through securing backing for the rest of the business.

It is understood a further 100 to 150 branches owned by Edinburgh Woollen Mill are being earmarked for closure while talks continue with landlords.

Last week ‘closing down’ signs appeared in the windows of Peacocks and Edinburgh Woollen Mill in Bristol’s Galleries shopping centre.

The group, owned by British billionaire businessman Philip Day, had revenue of £88.7million last year, with a net income of £11.9million.

It has more than 1,00 stores in the UK including 265 Edinburgh Woollen Mill stores and 479 Peacocks outlets.

There are four Peacocks stores across Bristol as well as branches in Gloucester, Bridgwater, Tewkesbury and Cirencester.

In a note written to staff, seen by PA, the company said: “Two weeks ago we wrote to you to say that we had applied to the High Court to protect the group from creditors for a short time, while we worked on a longer term plan to rescue as much of it as possible from the devastating effects of Covid-19 and the lockdowns.

“Since then we have been working on that plan and have made good progress, but it is a complex and difficult process.

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“We are speaking to a number of parties who are interested in either buying parts of the business or offering investment.

“What is clear is that this process will mean a lot of change for all of us and inevitably a significant number of store closures.

“We are pleased to say though that today the High Court has agreed to extend the breathing space for another two weeks to give us more time to work on the details and further pursue these opportunities.

“We will use this time as best we can to protect the businesses and save jobs.”

Edinburgh Woollen Mill has been approached for comment.

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