Jessops shuts York store

5:00pm Friday 11th January 2013

By Haydn Lewis

TROUBLED High Street camera retailer Jessops has shut its store in York.

Staff at the Spurriergate store pulled down the shutters at 4pm today after the administrators took the decision to close all Jessops stores across the country.

This means the closure off all 15 shops in Yorkshire and the North East with 106 redundancies including the 19 people employed at Spurriergate.

Edward Williams, Rob Hunt and Matthew Hammond of PwC were appointed joint administrators of The Jessop Group Limited earlier this week.

Mr Hunt, joint administrator and partner at PwC, said: "Since my appointment, we have reviewed the position of the business and held extensive discussions with suppliers around their support for ongoing trading.

“It is apparent that we cannot continue to trade and as a result we have had to make the difficult decision to begin the closure of all 187 Jessops stores at the close of business today.

“Regrettably, this will result in around 1,370 job losses across the stores with further job losses likely, in due course, at the head office in Leicester.

“The stock will be collected over the coming days and returned to a central warehouse. It will be returned to suppliers if they are entitled to it. As a consequence of the closure, Jessops is no longer able to accept returned product from customers.

“This is an extremely sad day for Jessops and its employees. We are very grateful for the support we have received since our appointment and we will continue to ensure that employees are paid as they assist us during the closure.”

Updates for consumers will be available through the Jessops and PwC websites shortly at www.pwc.co.uk/jessops

Speaking as the shutters lowered at the Spurriergate store today, trainee Daryl Tuck, 25 said: “We first heard about the administration two days ago on the news. We were told at first that the bigger stores would still remain open. We don’t know too much at the moment but we have all lost our jobs.”

Store Manager Jamie Brownlee said: “The company’s gone into liquidation. I will be here for the next week while we box everything up but as of now the store is closed.”

In July last year, Jessops moved its York store into new bigger premises in the former Game shop in Spurriergate. It relocated from its previous site in the White Swan Hotel building in Piccadilly, which is to be redeveloped.

York previously had three Jessops stores, including ones at Parliament Street and Monks Cross. Jessops underwent a major overhaul and a swathe of store closures in 2007, when York had three stores, which all escaped the cut at the time but two have since closed.

The business also came close to collapse in 2009 before being rescued by its main lender HSBC in a controversial debt-for-equity swap that saw it taken off the stock market.

The firm began life in 1935 when Frank Jessop opened his first shop in Leicester.

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