Over 1,300 Wilko jobs axed as administrators close stores

The administrators of collapsed retail chain Wilko have this afternoon made a further 1,315 people redundant after announcing the closure of 52 stores and axing jobs at two distribution centres in Worksop and Newport.

The final day of trading for these stores will be Tuesday 12 September and Thursday 14 September. The locations of the stores concerned will be published tomorrow (Wednesday 6 September) once staff who are affected have been informed. For those employed at the distribution centres, redundancy will be effective from close of business on Thursday 7 September.

The move comes after rival discount retailer B&M this morning announced that it had bought 51 stores from the Wilko portfolio.

Edward Williams, joint administrator, said: “In the absence of viable offers for the whole business, very sadly store closures and redundancies of team members from those stores are now necessary, in addition to the already announced redundancies at the support centre and distribution centres. We know this has been a deeply unsettling time for everyone concerned and would like to express our gratitude to all Wilko team members for the dedication and support they have continued to give the business in the most trying of circumstances.”

PwC says it “continues to explore all interest in the remainder of the business and are actively working with potential buyers”.

Andy Prendergast, GMB National Secretary, said: “Every single redundancy is a person who will wake up facing an uncertain future. This needs to be on the forefront of everyone’s minds.

“The reality is years of mismanagement have led us here.

“We are still doing everything we can secure a deal that would protect the majority of jobs and stores. But this will be of little comfort for those not knowing how they’ll pay their bills.”