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Ashley makes wage pledge to Sports Direct employees

Sports Direct employs around 28,000 staff across the UK and Europe. Credit: PA

Mike Ashley has promised to spend £10 million on raising the pay of all Sport Direct employees to above the minimum wage.

The pledge comes after the company's pay and employment practices, including the use of zero hours contracts, faced criticism.

Sports Direct has since announced that Mr Ashley will oversee a review of all agency worker terms and conditions.

Announcing the move, the Newcastle United owner told the Daily Mirror: "I believe as a FTSE 100 or even 250 company we have a responsibility to set a high moral standard.

"We're putting our money where our mouth is and have notified the City we will be spending £10 million ensuring all employees are above the minimum wage."

Ashley to review Sports Direct agency staff conditions

Mike Ashley owns Newcastle United football club. Credit: PA

Sports Direct boss Mike Ashley is to oversee a review of all agency worker terms and conditions at the company after criticism of their treatment, the firm's board has announced.

The retail giant has faced criticism for its pay and employment practices, including the use of zero hours contracts, under which staff don't know how many hours they will work from one week to the next.

The company defended itself in a lengthy statement, but said the review should start in the New Year "to ensure the company does not just meet its legal obligations, but also provides a good environment for the entire workforce".

"Sports Direct always seeks to improve and do things better, listens to criticism and acts where appropriate," it said in a statement.


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Sports Direct baby birth: Mother questioned

Police in Derbyshire are continuing to question a 28-year-old woman arrested on suspicion of wilful neglect.

It is in connection with the birth of a baby boy in an area around Sports Direct Warehouse in Shirebrook in Derbyshire.

A Sports Direct warehouse in Shirebrook Credit: ITV News Central

The baby is being treated at a neo-natal unit and making good progress, according to Derbyshire Constabulary.

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Woman arrested after baby born at business complex

Derbyshire police have arrested a woman in connection with the birth of a baby at business premises in Shirebrook.

The 28-year-old woman was arrested yesterday on suspicion of wilful neglect.

Officers were called out on New Year's Day following the birth of a baby in "unusual circumstances". The baby boy is being treated at a neo-natal unit and is making good progress but is still under going tests.

Police investigating baby born in retail warehouse

Police have launched an inquiry after a baby was born at a warehouse on New Year's Day and then admitted to a neo-natal unit.

Derbyshire Police said the baby's mother, who is believed to be of eastern European origin, was also taken to hospital for treatment.

Officers were unable to confirm reports that the child was born in a toilet block at a Sports Direct warehouse in Shirebook, near Bolsover, Derbyshire.

The Sports Direct warehouse in Shirebrook near Mansfield. Credit: Google Maps

The infant, whose mother is aged in her 20s, is described as being in a serious but stable condition.

In a statement, Derbyshire Constabulary said: "Police were called by the ambulance service at around 11.15pm on January 1 to reports of the birth of a baby in unusual circumstances at a business premises in Shirebrook.

"The baby was taken to a neo-natal unit, where he remains. Officers are still investigating the circumstances surrounding the birth."


Republic administrator 'pleased' with Sports Direct sale

The administrator for fashion retailer Republic has said welcomed the move to secure 2,100 jobs, after Sports Direct International bought the chain.

The undisclosed deal comes after administrators Ernst & Young closed five Republic shops in Scotland on Tuesday, with the loss of 105 jobs, and axed another 150 jobs at its head office in Leeds. Administrator Hunter Kelly said:

In what has been a very challenging time and volatile climate for retailers, it is particularly pleasing to have completed the successful sale of Republic, saving 2,100 jobs across the UK high street and at its Leeds-based headquarters.

The brand Republic is well-recognised and well-respected by customers for offering quality, high-fashion goods and it is a testament to its strength that Sports Direct has made this investment to secure its future and high street presence.

Sports Direct deal saves 2,100 jobs at Republic

More than 2,100 jobs have been saved by Sports Direct International's purchase of 116 stores from fashion retailer Republic.

The Sports World group was founded by Newcastle United owner Mike Ashley. Credit: Peter Byrne/PA Wire

The Sports World group has also taken over the stock, along with the group's head office in Leeds and its websites and brands SoulCal, Fabric and Crafted.