Humberside

Tears as last 18 Comet workers in Hull made redundant

Staff leaving Comet office in Hull
The employees were kept on by the administrators to wind down the business

The last 18 workers of failed electrical retailer Comet have lost their jobs after the firm's Hull head office closed.

Some of the workers were in tears as they left the building for the last time.

The employees were kept on by administrators Deloitte to "assist in the winding down of operations".

All 236 stores closed before Christmas with the loss of around 7,000 jobs, including up to 200 at the Hull centre.

Michelle Dray, who had worked for the firm for 32 years, said Comet was all she had ever known.

It's awful, really awful," she said.

"It's like losing a family member. It's really upsetting.

"I'm still looking for another job to go to, there's not many jobs out there."

'Big family'

The staff worked in the company's Human Resources department and were retained to finish off the redundancy process.

Ray Cheetham said that he was sad to be taking an early retirement after losing his job.

"It's just like been working for a big family," he said.

"I've really enjoyed it. I'm going to miss everybody here."

The company was founded in the city in 1933 and began by selling and recharging wireless batteries.

The first Comet superstore opened in Hull in 1968 and the company was listed on the stock market two years later.

The firm changed hands a number of times over the years, until it was bought by private equity company OpCapita last year for just £2.

Deloitte failed to find a new buyer for Comet and said the firm's losses in the year to April 2012 totalled £95m,

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