FASHION chain Laura Ashley, which as a store in Hereford, has called in administrators putting up to 2,700 jobs at risk nationwide

It comes after rescue talks were halted by the coronavirus outbreak. The troubled retailer had been in talks with stakeholders over refinancing, but it said its "revised cash flow forecasts and increased uncertainty" mean it will not be able to secure these funds in sufficient time.

Coronavirus: Live updates on the situation in Herefordshire

Largest shareholder Mui Asia said it was unable to support the retailer with "financial support in the required timeframe", according to news agency PA.


Laura Ashley said it hired advisers from PwC to oversee the administration on Tuesday.

The retailer operates 150 stores in the UK and employs around 2,700 staff, including the store in Maylord Orchard.

Laura Ashley said it had seen an upturn in sales in recent weeks, with trading up 24% year on year for the seven weeks to March 13.

However, it said the Covid-19 virus outbreak has "had an immediate and significant impact on trading, and ongoing developments indicate that this will be a sustained national situation".