Jane Norman which has store in Fremlin Walk, Maidstone, falls into administration for second time in three years

Womens’ fashion retailer Jane Norman has tumbled into administration for the second time in three years, putting 150 jobs at risk.

The chain has put the future of its 24 high street stores in UK and Ireland in doubt, including one in Maidstone, as it focuses on building its brand through online and international concessions.

In a statement it said after a number of challenging years for many high street retailers, “it is no longer able to continue to support its loss-making UK and Ireland retail stores”.

Jane Norman shop in Fremlin Walk, Maidstone
Jane Norman shop in Fremlin Walk, Maidstone

Its shops will remain open for the time being but administrators Grant Norton admitted store closures are likely.

The retailer closed dozens of stores after going bust in 2011, including ones in Canterbury and Ashford.

A store in Bluewater closed in January this year.

A spokesperson for Jane Norman said: “Like many retailers, we have seen extremely challenging conditions on the high street for several years in what is a very competitive sector in young fashion.

“While we have made every effort for a number of years to makes those stores work, that part of the business is no longer viable.

“At the same time, however, we fundamentally believe in the Jane Norman brand and its future as a web and international concessions business.

“For that reason we have taken the difficult decision to restructure the business to focus on future opportunities.”

Grant Thornton partner Les Ross added: “We intend to continue trading the stores for as long as possible with a view to achieving the best outcome for all concerned, in particular those people based in the stores. It is likely, however, that store closures are inevitable.”

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