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Department store John Lewis to axe nearly 400 jobs

PUBLISHED: 16:00 23 February 2017 | UPDATED: 19:40 23 February 2017

John Lewis. Picture: DENISE BRADLEY

John Lewis. Picture: DENISE BRADLEY

Archant

John Lewis is axing nearly 400 jobs across its restaurants and home fittings service as it grapples with the acute pressures facing the retail sector.

The department store chain said 387 jobs would be lost as it shifts home fittings administration roles to a central hub in Manchester and outsources food preparation for its ‘The Place to Eat’ restaurants.

Around 773 staff have now entered redundancy consultation and been given the opportunity to apply for 386 new roles.

John Lewis has stores at Norwich, Ipswich and Chelmsford however the company said it would not reveal which premises were affected at this stage.

It comes after the high street bellwether said last month that it expects its renowned staff bonus to be “significantly lower” than last year in the face of a challenging market outlook.

Dino Rocos, John Lewis operations director, said the move would adapt the business to the changing needs of customers amid “a backdrop of structural changes in the retail industry”.

“Our Partners are passionate about offering the very best customer service and these proposals will allow us to modernise our business as it adapts to the changing needs of our customers and the role that shops play in their lives,” he said.

“We understand that for some this will mean a period of change, and we are working with affected partners over the consultation period to give opportunities for redeployment in new roles wherever possible.”

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