Beales stores in Beccles, Diss and Lowestoft unaffected by CVA deal

File photo dated 17/01/14 of shoppers carrying shopping bags on Oxford Street, in central London as

File photo dated 17/01/14 of shoppers carrying shopping bags on Oxford Street, in central London as retail sales slipped back during a weather-hit January but are still in a much healthier state than a year ago, official figures showed today. PRESS ASSOCIATION Photo. Issue date: Friday February 21, 2014. The Office for National Statistics (ONS) said sales volumes were 4.3% higher in January when compared with a year earlier, although the figure was 1.5% lower against the previous month following a bumper Christmas. See PA story ECONOMY Retail. Photo credit should read: Dominic Lipinski/PA Wire - Credit: PA

Department store Beales said its branches in Lowestoft, Beccles and Diss would not be affected as it appealed to renegotiate rents on its unviable stores across the country.

The chain said the company voluntary arrangement (CVA) was 'to ensure its long-term viability'.

Landlords of loss-making stores will be asked to reduce Beales' rents or take the premises back, and a meeting will be held on March 24 to approve the proposals.

Chairman Stuart Lyons said: 'Most of Beales' stores are profitable, including our stores in Beccles, Lowestoft and Diss, which are unaffected by the proposal.'

But he said some rents 'agreed some years ago are no longer sustainable', adding: 'These legacy rents have been dragging the group down. This is a unique opportunity to restore the group to financial health.'

Beales, founded in 1881, has 29 department stores nationally, and said it had already been supported by major landlords and supplier.

The CVA follows a similar move by retailer BHS last week to reduce rents at struggling stores.

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