Fears for the future of BHS – and its Ipswich town centre store

British Home Stores Ipswich

British Home Stores Ipswich BHS

A huge question mark is today hanging over the future of one of Britain’s best-known High Street stores – and one of the largest stores in Ipswich town centre.

Speculation grew over the weekend that administrators were about to be called in to BHS, which started life 88 years ago as British Home Stores, putting the jobs of 11,000 workers at risk.

In Ipswich the company has one of its largest stores in the Butter Market street with a restaurant overlooking Arras Square.

Just last month its range extended with the opening of a small food department.

However the company has been struggling financially for some time. On Sunday a spokesman, who could not give details, said a statement is expected “sometime tomorrow about BHS’s future.”

It would be the biggest retail failure since Woolworths folded in 2008 with the loss of almost 30,000 jobs.

Entrepreneur Sir Philip Green, who owns Topshop, sold BHS last year for £1.

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The fashion and homewares store was thrown a lifeline last month when creditors backed two company voluntary arrangements (CVA) designed to revive its ailing business by cutting costs and preventing widespread store closures.

• It has today been announced that BHS has gone into administration, see update here

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