Jessops store under threat

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HIGH street camera shop Jessops has gone into administration leaving several jobs at its Hastings branch at risk.

The business, which has a branch in Priory Meadow, is the latest major UK retailer to run into financial trouble following the recent collapse of Comet, Clinton Cards, JJB Sports and Game Group.

Edward Williams, Rob Hunt and Matthew Hammond of Price Waterhouse Cooper were appointed joint administrators of The Jessop Group Limited on Wednesday. They warned store closures were “inevitable.”

It is believed the firms decline in digital camera sales in recent years is due to on line competition and mobile phone growth.

Trade declined during last year and Christmas sales were also poor.

Anyone with vouchers will not be able to use them. The business will also not be able to accept returned goods.

Last year Priory Meadow lost major retailers Next, JJB and the Early Learning Centre.

Shopping Centre manager John Hough said: “The Jessops store is still trading and hopefully it can be taken out of administration.

“It would be a blow to our retail mix at the centre.

“I feel it’s another victim of the internet and there needs to be some kind of online tax for a fairer playing field for all .”

Rob Hunt, joint administrator and partner for PWC, said: “Our most pressing task is to review the company’s financial position and hold discussions with its principal stakeholders to see if the business can be preserved.

“Trading in the stores is hoped to continue but is critically dependent on ongoing discussions.

“However in the current economic climate it is inevitable that there will be store closures.”