WEYMOUTH-based fashion chain tReds has ceased trading following a tumultuous year for the business.

In its heyday tReds had 21 stores nationwide, including a shop on Bond Street in the town centre, which has since been repossessed by landlords.

All 102 members of staff employed by the chain have lost their jobs.

The shoe and clothing retailer struggled to survive under 'difficult' trading conditions, falling into administration at the beginning of 2019 before being rescued by businesswoman Elaine McPherson - understood to be a former business partner of fashion mogul Sir Philip Green.

A new company, 'New Gray Ltd', was set up to run the remaining 16 stores, which continued trading under the name tReds.

At first all staff were kept on, until disaster struck in October 2019, when the business was advised of a potential trademark infringement over a brand of shoes that had been stocked by the previous owners, according to Companies House.

Following an investigation by local Trading Standards officers, the business was advised in December 2019 that sales of the shoes must cease, which meant £120,000 worth of stock was "effectively worthless," administrators say.

Five tReds branches were subsequently closed in January 2020 in a bid to reduce overhead costs, however the business continued to struggle and administrators Duff and Phelps were called in.

On March 20 all 102 members of staff were made redundant, as there were "no funds remaining with which to make payment for their employment contract entitlements."

Despite attempts to sell the business, it could not be rescued and the remaining tReds stock was sold to one of the company directors.

Records show that New Gray owed money to a range of creditors and former tReds staff, with debts of £819,020.

On June 2 a van was seen removing stock from the shop's former Bond Street premises. Since then, a solicitors' repossession notice has been displayed in the window to inform the public that the premises were re-secured by the landlord, Betterment Properties Ltd on June 10.

On June 25, a discounted shoe sale was held at the shop by Direct Moves estate agents.

Launched in 1996, tReds quickly carved a niche amongst fashion-conscious residents, tapping into Weymouth’s youth market by selling street and skatewear labels such as Kickers, Etnies and Vans.

With its distinctive red, black and white signage, tReds soon became a recognisable brand in its own right, and expanded to other areas in the UK - particularly coastal towns - whilst maintaining its head quarters at Weymouth’s Lynch Lane industrial estate.

Established before the age of internet shopping, tReds offered young people a local alternative to high-street fashion chains and many residents of a certain age will have fond memories of shopping there.

Claudia Moore, chief operation officer of Weymouth BID, said: “Weymouth BID is very to sorry to hear this news about a much loved Weymouth shop during these difficult times. We wish the best for all its staff.”

  • The company administrators have been contacted for comment.