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B&M to close some stores amid coronavirus outbreak

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A bargain retailer has announced plans to temporarily close nearly 50 of its stores during the coronavirus outbreak.B&M Bargains has 656 stores across the UK and will be closing 49 of them after a review of its finances.B&M in Ashford. Picture: Barry GoodwinKent has 13 stores in Strood, Tonbridge, Folkestone, Isle of Sheppey, Broadstairs, Chatham…

A bargain retailer has announced plans to temporarily close nearly 50 of its stores during the coronavirus outbreak.

B&M Bargains has 656 stores across the UK and will be closing 49 of them after a review of its finances.

B&M in Ashford. Picture: Barry Goodwin
B&M in Ashford. Picture: Barry Goodwin

Kent has 13 stores in Strood, Tonbridge, Folkestone, Isle of Sheppey, Broadstairs, Chatham and Gravesend.

Ashford, Canterbury and Dover have two stores each.

Though the discounter has not specified which stores are to shut, staff in the ones closing will see up to 80% of their wages covered by the government’s Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme.

B&M did confirm, however, that stores closing their doors would include a number of smaller outlets and ones located in shopping centres.

It added 42 of the 49 stores due to shut are close to other larger B&M stores.

B&M in Ashford. Picture: Barry Goodwin
B&M in Ashford. Picture: Barry Goodwin

The retailer has been allowed to continue trading under Government guidelines as an essential store, but said it took the decision after reviewing its finances for the last quarter.

B&M Bargains, which has been allowed to continue trading under Government guidelines, said it made the decision after reviewing its finances for the past quarter.

B&M said: “We will review the trading patterns on an on-going basis and intend to re-open those stores as soon as normal shopping patterns resume.”

Read more: All the latest news from Kent


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