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Debenhams in Gravesend to close on May 2 with Bromley and Westwood Cross stores to follow after £55m takeover by Boohoo


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A high-street giant has announced the closing dates for 27 stores.

Debenhams confirmed the Gravesend outlet will shut its doors for the last time on Sunday, May 2.

Debenhams in New Road, Gravesend, on the day it was announced the firm was being wound down
Debenhams in New Road, Gravesend, on the day it was announced the firm was being wound down

It announced 26 other locations across England and Wales will permanently shut on the same day or on May 4.

A date is yet to be set for the Bromley and Westwood Cross sites but the clothing chain confirmed all of its outlets will cease trading by May 15 at the latest.

Discounts of up to 80% off fashion and home and up to 70% off beauty and fragrance are available as shops clear their remaining stock.

All stores have been made covid-secure with appropriate hygiene and social distancing measures in place.

A spokesman said: "With such great bargains on offer, it's no wonder our stock is selling out incredibly fast.

The store at Westwood Cross in Broadstairs
The store at Westwood Cross in Broadstairs

"Time is running out for shoppers to take advantage of the incredible discounts being offered at these 27 stores."

After a string of major store closures across the county at the start of last year, only branches at Westwood Cross in Broadstairs, Bromley and Gravesend had survived.

But any hopes the three stores could continue trading were quashed after online fashion retailer Boohoo announced it was taking over the 242-year-old brand – and had no plans to keep any of the 118 retail outlets open, a move which will likely see 12,000 job losses nationwide.

The decision to close its stores was described as a "devastating blow to the high street" by one union.

All outlets will close by May 15 at the latest. Picture: Richard Marsham
All outlets will close by May 15 at the latest. Picture: Richard Marsham

The retail giant fell into administration and then liquidation last year after years of trying to balance the books amid a changing retail landscape.

Boohoo chief executive John Lyttle said: "The acquisition of the Debenhams brand is an important development for the group, as we seek to capture incremental growth opportunities arising from the accelerating shift to online retail."

Read more: All the latest news from Gravesend

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