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Over to you Mike! Decision imminent over Beatties' future

By Alex Ross | Wolverhampton | Business | Published:

A decision over the future of Beatties is imminent.

Businessman Mike Ashley is due to make a decision over House of Fraser stores including, Wolverhampton's Beatties

Sources close to House of Fraser’s new owner Mike Ashley said last night an announcement would be made ‘very shortly’.

More than 6,000 people have now called on Mr Ashley to keep the 141-year-old store open on the Express & Star’s website.

Britain’s Got Talent star Donchez Dacres, DJ Dicky Dodd, cycling legend Hugh Porter and city Mayor Phil Page showed their support outside the store yesterday with crowds of supportive well-wishers joining the throng.

Yesterday, Mr Ashley revealed he is keeping the House of Fraser store in Telford Shopping Centre open.

It is the second store after London’s Oxford Street shop to be saved and means more than 150 jobs have been saved.

Last night, the Express & Star was told Beatties would be one of ‘four or five stores’ subject of an announcement ‘imminently’.

The department store has faced problems since the House of Fraser collapse with in-store furniture concession ScS unable to fulfil customer orders.

Around £100,000 worth of orders are currently deadlocked in a row between HoF and ScS with around 50 customers unable to collect items they thought they had bought.

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An ScS spokesman explained: “All in-store customer purchases are made directly with House of Fraser Ltd and we simply act as the supplier.

“We await clarification and confirmation from the administrator and the new owners, Sports Direct, to understand what they’re intending to do for customers who have placed orders in-store prior to the administration. Until then, we’re unable to supply to HoF or fulfil customer orders that were placed prior to the sale to Sports Direct.”

Meanwhile support has been growing for the E&S ‘We’re backing Beatties’ campaign.

Britain’s Got Talent star Donchez, famous for his Wiggle Wine performance, said he was hopeful the store could bounce back.

He even said he would include the famous store in one of his forthcoming songs. He said: “Beatties is the best shop in Wolverhampton. It is the must-go place for anyone coming to the city centre.

“Generations have shopped here. We have to keep it alive.”

Alex Ross

By Alex Ross
Investigations Editor - @alexross_star

Investigations Editor at the Express & Star. Everyone has a story - tell me yours.

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