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Last Updated: Friday, 16 September 2005, 12:33 GMT 13:33 UK
300 staff lose jobs at Beatties
About 300 people are to lose their jobs at the Beatties department store chain.

New owners House of Fraser said 140 jobs would go with the closure of the Birmingham store, and the rest of the posts being lost at 11 other locations.

Beatties' Birmingham branch has lost 7m since it opened in 2001 and will close for good in January.

The House of Fraser, which bought the Beatties stores in August, said it hoped to be able to find jobs for some staff elsewhere in the group.

About 20 job cuts will be made at Beatties' headquarters in Wolverhampton, and a total of 145 across the other 10 branches.

New store

John Coleman, chief executive of House of Fraser, said: "The decision to close a store is never an easy one, but we feel this is the best course of action given the store's performance and proximity to our existing Birmingham store.

"At the same time, we are driving forward our store opening programme and look forward to the opening of our new store in Norwich on Wednesday next week.

"House of Fraser is extremely grateful to all Beatties members for their commitment to the business.

"We will be working hard alongside all staff at the Birmingham Beatties store to seek to redeploy as many members as possible to other areas of the group."

Beatties was founded in 1877 and has stores in Aylesbury, Birkenhead, Burton-on-Trent, Dudley, Huddersfield, Northampton, Solihull, Sutton Coldfield, Telford and Worcester, as well as in Birmingham and Wolverhampton.

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