Job loss fear for Doncaster model shop staff

Tag's Modelshop, also known as Modelzone.
Tag's Modelshop, also known as Modelzone.
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Jobs are under threat at the only remaining model shop in Doncaster town centre.

A stock liquidation sale has already started at the Modelzone store in Nether Hall Road, where five people work.

The chain of 47 stores, which specialise in model railways, remote control cars and aircraft, construction kits, and slot car racing, collapsed into administration last week.

The Doncaster shop also trades under the name TAG Models, which was taken over by Modelzone a few years ago after the business started in West Street in the 1980s.

The chain’s collapse has put 400 jobs at risk across the country and is the latest blow to the British high street.

Administrators from Deloitte have been appointed by the firm in the hope of finding a ‘white knight’ to save the business.

The business has struggled in recent years, making an operating loss in 2012 of £750,000, after a disastrous expansion plan left it with a hefty rent bill.

Administrators are hopeful of finding a buyer with several parties thought to be interested, including former owner David Mordecai.

Richard Hawes, joint administrator at Deloitte, explained: “We are working closely with customers and employees to ensure the business has the best possible platform to secure a sale, preserve jobs and generate as much value as possible for all creditors.”

The company’s 47 stores remain open but the website has been shut down. Gift vouchers are now worth half of their original value.

Modelzone admitted it was struggling in its most recent accounts, stating: “Trading performance for the year was disappointing. Following a review of the business, it became clear that the business infrastructure and management capability was insufficient, not only to take the business forward and grow further, but also to deliver sustainable profitability.”

The Doncaster shop has launched a sale with reductions of between 10 and 30 per cent.