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high street blues

Marks & Spencer to cut 950 jobs in the UK — but its Irish stores are 'unaffected'

M&S was in the middle of a restructuring when the pandemic hit.

MARKS & SPENCER HAS announced plans to shed 950 jobs as part of a major restructuring of its UK operations.

Jobs at the retailer’s Irish stores are not affected by today’s announcement — which relates only to the UK business — a spokesperson for the company confirmed.

According to a statement on the group’s website, jobs will be shed across store management, property and head office roles as the group looks to accelerate its planned restructuring programme.

M&S was in the middle of a major revamp of its operations when the pandemic hit and in the last year, the group has closed down 54 UK stores in a bid to cut costs.

In May, in response to the pandemic, the group announced that it would accelerate its transformation with an initiative called ‘Never the Same Again’.

Commenting on today’s announcement, Sacha Berendji, director of retail, operations and property at M&S, said that the job cuts “reflect an important next step in our ‘Never the Same Again’ programme to accelerate our transformation and become a stronger, leaner and more resilient business.

“Through the crisis, we have seen how we can work faster and more flexibly by empowering store teams and it’s essential that we embed that way of working. Our priority now is to support all those affected through the consultation process and beyond.”

The announcement comes just a day after another UK fashion retailer, Ted Baker, announced that it plans to shed 500 jobs, more than a quarter of its UK workforce.

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