Blockbuster jobs in danger

A number of jobs in Central Beds are in danger after video rental giant Blockbuster went into administration yesterday (January 16).

At the moment the fate of stores in West Street, Dunstable; Marsh Road, Luton; Park Street, Luton, and Waterborne Walk, Leighton Buzzard, is uncertain.

The chain has 528 stores and employs 4,190 staff across the country.

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The success of online video streaming services such as Netflix and LoveFilm have contributed to the downfall of the once much-loved rental outlet.

A spokesman told the Gazette: “Unfortunately at this time we do not have the level of detail to comment on the future of individual stores.

“Each store employs an average of about five staff. Around three quarters of our staff are part time.”

Yesterday, accountancy firm Deloitte announced they will take over the running of the Blockbuster business as administrators.

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Deloitte’s Lee Manning said: “The core of the business is still profitable and we will continue to trade as normal in both retail and rental whilst we seek a buyer for all or parts of the business as a going concern.

“During this time gift cards and credit acquired through Blockbuster’s trade-in scheme will be honoured towards the purchase of goods.”

As entertainment retailer HMV and camera outlet Jessops also going into administration this year, the Local Data Company said this is the worst period for the High Street it has seen.

Director Matthew Hopkinson said: ““The administration and potential closure of over 1,400 stores in less than a month far surpasses Woolworths’ 807 in January 2009.”