1. ITV Report

Hundreds of jobs lost as House of Fraser Metrocentre announces closure

Hundreds of jobs will be lost, following the announcement of the closure of the Gateshead branch of House of Fraser.

Staff informed managers at the department store in the Metrocentre this morning. The business was recently bought by Newcastle United and Sports Direct owner Mike Ashley.

It's the latest in a list of high street casualties Credit: PA

The Metrocentre store is one of four set for closure in the New Year. House of Fraser stores in Middlesbrough and Darlington both avoided closure, saving over 100 jobs. Both stores had been earmarked for closure earlier this year when the retailer agreed a Company Voluntary Agreement with several of its landlords.

All four stores announced today are within the Intu shopping complex schemes around the country.

Employees at Lakeside, Norwich, and Nottingham will also lose their jobs.

  • In a statement, House of Fraser said:

We had various meetings with the landlord, Intu Properties plc, and adopted a flexible approach. Despite our best efforts we have been unable to agree reasonable terms for these stores to continue trading. Sadly, we are now in consultation with staff about the fact these stores face closure. We hope other institutional landlords will continue to work with us in order to save stores and jobs.

– House of Fraser
  • Owner Mike Ashley released the following statement:

We had multiple meetings with Intu, but we were no further forward after 14 weeks. Unfortunately, these stores now face closing in the New Year. I urge other institutional landlords to be more proactive to help save the HoF stores in their schemes.

– Mike Ashley