Business

Budgens: More than 800 jobs lost as 34 stores close

A Budgens store - not clear where Image copyright PA

A chain of 34 Budgens stores has failed to find a buyer and will close, with the loss of more than 800 jobs.

The owner of the stores affected, Food Retailer Operations Limited (FROL), was put in administration a month ago after hitting "difficult" trading conditions.

The stores are spread around the UK, from Dorset to Norfolk to Scotland, and were bought from the Co-op in 2016.

The closures do not affect the remainder of the Budgens chain, which has more than 100 stores.

The administrators, PwC, said they had failed to find a buyer for the FROL stores and were looking for firms to take over their leases.

Nine of the 34 closed at the weekend and the remaining 25 will shut for good over the next two weeks.

Mike Denny, joint administrator at PwC, said: "Unfortunately, we have been unable to find a buyer and it is not commercially viable to continue trading the stores.

"We are working closely with the Co-op, USDAW and the relevant government agencies to ensure that all employees receive the maximum levels of practical and financial support through the redundancy process."

The Budgens brand is owned by food wholesale giant Booker, which is currently in the process of being taken over by Tesco.

The Budgens stores affected:

Closed on 26 February:

  • Aberystwyth
  • Blackburn
  • South Benfleet
  • Ludlow
  • Weoley Castle
  • Norwich
  • Dagenham (Becontree)
  • Greenwich
  • Sydenham

Closing on 5 March:

  • Northumberland Heath
  • Watton
  • Buckley - Brunswick Rd
  • Prestwick
  • Crewkerne - Falklands Sq
  • Helston - The Parade
  • Cardigan - Lower Mwldan
  • Totnes - Fore St
  • Shaftesbury - Bell St
  • Christchurch - Saxon Sq
  • Rochford - Roche Close
  • Basingstoke - Winklebury Way
  • Tiverton - Market Walk

Closing on 9 March:

  • Gillingham, Kent
  • Southall, London
  • Littlehampton - Wick St
  • Sherwood - Mansfield Rd
  • Newport, Shropshire
  • New Invention
  • New Brighton
  • Wisbech
  • St Neots
  • Paisley
  • Monmouth - Oldway Centre
  • Weymouth - Littlemoor Rd

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