Administrators for Sphere & Turret have confirmed that around 90 people across Scotland are now out of work after the business went into administration.
It was announced yesterday (Wednesday) that the clothing group had ceased trading with immediate effect.
We haven’t been given any explanationSimon Johnston
BDO LLP business restructuring partners Bryan Jackson and James Stephen have been appointed Joint Administrators.
With the exception of a skeleton staff at its head office in Methil, all of the company’s employees, estimated at this stage to be between 80 and 90 people across 15 stores in Scotland, have been made redundant.
Bryan Jackson, BDO business restructuring partner, said: “Unfortunately difficult trading conditions significantly affected the business and the company is not in a position to continue to trade. It is therefore with great regret that all stores operated by the company will close and the Joint Administrator’s objective will now be to maximise value from the company’s assets for the benefit of all its creditors.”
Following the news, which broke on Wednesday afternoon, Claire Baker MSP has called on the Scottish Government and Fife Council to work together to support staff.
She said: “The news of Sphere & Turrets administration is yet another damaging blow for the local economy and my thoughts are with staff and their families.
“Cummings has been a cornerstone of Leven High Street since 1879 and the impact of its closures on the area cannot be underestimated.
“It is vital that the Scottish Government and Fife Council now work together to support staff and our local high streets during this difficult time and I will be looking to raise this issue in Parliament next week.”
In Fife, stores in Kirkcaldy, Leven, Glenrothes and Dunfermline have closed, while shops in Forfar, Clydebank, Kirkintilloch, Broughty Ferry, Arbroath and Cumbernauld have also shut down.
Former staff member, Simon Johnston, who worked at the Sphere & Turret store in Kirkcaldy for over four years, told us: “I was on a day off and my phone had been turned off, so I found out through Facebook.
“We haven’t been given any explanation - all I know is they apparently walked into the stores at 11.00 a.m. this morning and closed the shutters.
“All my colleagues are devastated - I’m still trying to get my head round it.
“We had absolutely no idea it was going to happen.”
The closure of Cummings, a department store owned by the group which has been on Leven High Street since 1879, has been called ‘devastating’ by chairman of the Levenmouth area committee Councillor Tom Adams, who added: “This is a blow for the high street. It’s devastating, especially when Fife Council are trying to do good down there.”