Jobs go as plug finally pulled on Comet stores

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MORE than 50 Comet stores – including six from this region – are to trade for their final weekend as hopes fade over a rescue deal for the stricken consumer electronics chain.

Sales offering at least 50 per cent off products, except televisions and laptops, have been launched at 54 stores closing between now and early next week.

Today is the final trading day for the Harrogate branch and tomorrow stores in Wakefield, Pontefract and Grimsby will close. Monday is the final day for Guiseley and Queens Road, Sheffield.

The 54 closing are among the 125 store closures already announced by administrator Deloitte in a move expected to result in around 3,000 retail job losses. The remaining 70 stores are expected to be closed by Christmas unless a buyer can be found.

Comet collapsed into administration last month in what marked one of the biggest high street casualties since the demise of Woolworths in 2008 and followed a month after the failure of JJB Sports.

A number of firms are thought to have put forward potential bids, with Appliances Online confirming it had made an offer for Comet’s website under plans to continue the business exclusively online.

But administrators said last week they had no option but to start closing stores in the absence of a firm offer for the whole of the business.

Around 2,600 jobs have already been axed by administrators.

andrew.robinson1@ypn.co.uk