DVD stores spared the axe

Blockbuster in Wigan
Blockbuster in Wigan

WIGAN’S Blockbuster store has been spared the axe - at least for now.

When the DVD rental firm went into administration last week, the joint administrators announced plans to shut down 129 stores and another 31 had already been put on notice of closure.

But the administrators have today confirmed that neither the Wigan outlet in Wigan Lane, nor Leigh’s Holden Road site is currently on the list.

A spokesman could not confirm how many jobs were affected, but did state that an average of five people worked in each store.

Nor could he comment on the longer-term future of the two stores.

The stricken chain had 528 outlets across the country - 79 of them in the North West - and in total employed 4,190 staff.

The administrators say they will continue to review the profitability of the store portfolio and announcements of further closures may be made in coming weeks.

Meanwhile staff at the stores earmarked for closure are facing redundancy, although the shutdowns are not taking place with immediate effect.

The stores now run by accountancy firm Deloitte will remain open for business as usual and customers will be notified in advance of any proposed closures so that they can return their outstanding rental items beforehand.

Lee Manning, joint administrator, added: “Having reviewed the portfolio with management, the store closure plan is an inevitable consequence of having to restructure the company to a profitable core which is capable of being sold.

“We would like to thank the company’s employees for their support and professionalism during this difficult time.

“We are also grateful to the customers for their continued support.”