Notts discount retailer collapses into administration with 500 jobs lost

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Nottinghamshire-based JTF Mega Discount Warehouse has fallen into administration after a deal to sell the company fell through at the last minute.

In a double whammy for the stricken chain, staff at the Tuxford firm are set to take legal action against the retail consortium after receiving notice that they had been made redundant with immediate effect.

A statement issued on behalf of the company said that the pandemic had played a significant role in its demise, with the forced closure of stores wiping out fireworks and Christmas sales which were “two of the largest seasonal items for JTF”.

The company says it is continuing to seek a buyer, but it has issued a notice of intention to appoint an administrator.

Now, a handful of former members of staff have contacted law firm Simpson Millar after they say they were notified by email that they had been made redundant with immediate effect, and that those on furlough would not be returning to work as expected.

Law firm Simpson Millar says it is now in the early stages of investigations to enable appropriate legal action to be brought to secure what is known as a Protective Award on their behalf for the company’s failure to properly consult staff regarding the mass redundancies.

The firm has also set up an online compensation form which allows other employees to see whether they can also claim.

Damian Kelly, head of employment law at the firm, said: “The current situation is making it difficult for many companies across most industries and it is no surprise that retail giants – and particularly those that are so reliant on physical footfall – are being significantly impacted by the coronavirus pandemic.

“Sadly in this instance we understand that there had been a buyer for the business, but that the sale will no longer be taking place. As a result, the number of employees who are facing redundancy is really quite significant.”

“While some companies are struggling because of the pandemic, they still have a duty under current employment law legislation to carry out a proper consultation with staff at risk of redundancies. Where that does not happen, employees can bring a claim for a Protective Award.”

JTF was acquired by current chairman Arthur Harris in January 2020, saving it from entering administration at the time. It has 12 outlets in retail parks across the Midlands and the north.