STUNNED staff at sofa firm Harveys Furniture say they were brought back from furlough – only to be told the next day the company had gone administration.
Workers at their Braehead store, near Glasgow, were among those told to return to work on Monday to prepare for the store reopening.
But they arrived this morning to be told the company was going into administration after bosses claimed coronavirus had “made a difficult situation even more challenging.”
The husband of one worker told The Scottish Sun: "It’s a disgrace. They’d have known before she came into work that the company would have been going into administration.
"But yet they made her spend the day preparing social distancing measures so the shop was safe.
"Workers have been in tears at the news."
The Sun has contacted Harveys parent company – Alteri Investors – for comment.
High street closures in 2020
HERE'S a round-up of some of the big names on the high street that have gone under this year:
- Department store chain Bealeswent into administration in January with 23 shops and 1,052 jobs at risk
- High end fashion brand Ted Baker said it plans to axe 160 jobs in February
- Brighthouse and Carluccio’swent into administration at the end of March
- Mobile phone retailer Carphone Warehouse said in March that it'll close all 531 standalone stores in April
- Debenhams entered administration for the second time in 12 months in April, and has since announced a number of store closures
- Struggling shoe shop Officeput itself up for sale in April 2020
- Oasis and Warehouse closed down in April 2020 with the loss of 1,800 jobs
- Cath Kidston closed all 60 shops in April 2020 with the loss of 900 jobs
- Clarks said in May 2020 that it would have to lose 900 roles as high street closures loom
- Shoe chain Aldo collapsed into administration in June 2020 with five stores permanently closed
- Victoria's Secrets plunged into administration in June 2020, putting 800 jobs at risk
- Fashion chain Quiz put its shop business into administration in June 2020, putting 82 stores at risk
Harveys is the latest retail casualty of the coronavirus crisis as high street stores fights to recover from lockdown.
Restructuring company Alteri has run Harveys and sister chain Bensons for Beds since November after taking them over from struggling South African retailer Steinhoff.
Bensons was also put into administration today, but it was bought out in a pre-arranged deal by Alteri.
Administrators PWC will keep trading Harveys stores in the hope someone will buy the firm.
Chief executive Mark Jackson wrote to staff in an email: “Like most other retailers the impact of coronavirus has, I’m afraid, made a difficult situation even more challenging.
“So, it is with heartfelt regret that I must tell you today that the group has taken the difficult decision to call upon administrators.”
High streets across the UK have taken a hit due to lockdown forcing non-essential retailers to close for three months.
Retailers only began reopening their doors this month, although they have been allowed to trade online throughout the crisis.
Experts at the Centre for Retail Research predict 20,000 stores will close this year, resulting in 235,000 job losses in the retail sector.
The pandemic has so far seen the collapse of Cath Kidston and Laura Ashley, while Debenhams has also been forced to call in administrators for the second time in 12 months.
Oasis and Warehouse have also turned into online only retailers after falling into administration.
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