Blockbuster stores to close

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Film rental chain blockbuster is to close three of its stores in the south.

Both the Cowplain and Fareham stores will shut, as will the store in Chichester, as part of attempts to make the business attractive to potential buyers.

The stores are three of 164 being closed during the coming weeks, with all staff in the stores facing redundancy.

Administrators from Deloitte said the remaining stores will continue to trade as usual whilst administrators progress negotiations with bidders.

Stock in the stores is going to be sold off to customers.

A dedicated employee helpline is in place and the company is running an Employee Assistance Programme to help those staff facing redundancy find other jobs.

Closing stores will remain open for business as usual and customers will be notified in advance of closure so that they can return their outstanding rental items beforehand.

Lee Manning, joint administrator, said: ‘We have continued to review the performance of individual stores since our appointment a month ago and have concluded that further closures are necessary in order to restructure the company for sale.

‘We would like to thank the Company’s employees for their support and professionalism during this difficult time and we are also grateful for the continued support of customers.

‘We are in discussions with a number of parties interested in purchasing all or parts of the business and will update on progress in due course.’