All Debenhams stores in Scotland to remain closed after lockdown

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image captionDebenhams stores in Scotland will not reopen after lockdown unlike others across the rest of the UK

Debenhams will not reopen any of its 15 stores in Scotland once lockdown ends, the retailer has announced.

Its shops in England, Wales and Northern Ireland will reopen briefly so the remaining stock can be sold before closing for good.

Fashion retailer Boohoo has bought the Debenhams brand and its website but it will not take on any of its stores or workforce.

A total of 647 staff in Scotland are now being made redundant.

The department store chain is being wound down and in total about 12,000 jobs are risk.

In a statement, Debenhams said it intended to re-open stores in England, Wales and Northern Ireland "for a short period... as soon as government restrictions allow".

However non-essential shops in Scotland are likely remain shut for additional two weeks after that date.

First Minister Nicola Sturgeon has said they will reopen on 26 April at the earliest, when the country is likely to return to a tiered system of local restrictions.

"Because this timeline does not align with those expected in other parts of the UK and therefore with the planned wind-down of the Debenhams business, regrettably our 15 stores in Scotland will now not reopen and are closed permanently," the statement said.

The affected stores are in:

  • Aberdeen
  • Ayr
  • Dumfries
  • Dundee
  • Dunfermline
  • East Kilbride
  • Edinburgh
  • Falkirk
  • Glasgow city centre
  • Glasgow Silverburn
  • Inverness
  • Leith
  • Livingston
  • Perth
  • Stirling

Debenhams has struggled for years with falling profits and rising debts, as more shopping has moved online. It called in administrators twice in two years, more recently in April.

Its position became untenable during the coronavirus pandemic as non-essential retailers were forced to close for prolonged periods.

Joint administrator Geoff Rowley said: "The Debenhams liquidation clearance continues online, and will restart in stores in England, Wales and Northern Ireland once restrictions allow.

"We regret that Debenhams' Scottish stores will not be able to reopen, and would like to thank all those employees affected for their commitment to Debenhams during what I know has been an extremely unsettling time."

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