Six Debenhams stores shut for good, but Suffolk branches plan to reopen

Debenhams on Westgate Street in Ipswich

Debenhams plans to reopen its Ipswich store after the lockdown. - Credit: Charlotte Bond

Debenhams has said it will permanently shut six stores — but stores in Suffolk and north Essex are spared and will still reopen.

The retailer's flagship Oxford Street shop along with stores in Portsmouth, Staines, Harrogate, Weymouth and Worcester will not reopen with the loss of 320 jobs.

The company started a liquidation process last month after failing to secure a last-minute rescue sale.

But the Debenhams stores in Ipswich, Bury St Edmunds and Colchester could still reopen after lockdown.

FRP Advisory, the insolvency firm overseeing the process, said it still intends to reopen as many stores as possible to sell off stock, despite coronavirus restrictions keeping non-essential retailers shut.

Geoff Rowley, joint administrator to Debenhams and partner at FRP, said: “We regret the impact on those colleagues affected by today’s announcement and would like to thank all those who continue to keep the business trading in very difficult circumstances.”

The chain is continuing to sell off stock through online platforms.