THE credit crunch claimed another prominent Northwich store this week when childrenswear chain Adams Kids shut down.

The company, the UK’s largest independent childrenswear seller, announced the closure of 111 of its stores on Monday, January 5, five days after calling in the administrators.

And less than 48 hours after 65 employees at Woolworths were made redundant (see page 5), staff at Adams in the town centre were told they had lost their jobs.

Workers at the Crewe store were only notified of the news via e-mail at 8.30am on Monday, but no one from Adams was available to confirm whether Northwich staff had suffered the same indignity.

Adams, which celebrated its 75th anniversary last year, blamed the decision on the “current downturn being experienced on the High Street”.

The company was bought out of administration in February 2007 by Northern Ireland businessman John Shannon and appeared to be showing signs of improvement, but then began to suffer from increasing competition from supermarket chains.

Rob Hunt, from administrators PricewaterhouseCoopers, said: “Unfortunately, this will inevitably lead to a number of job losses and 850 people across the company will be made redundant with immediate effect.

“My team and I will be doing all we can to help these employees at this difficult time.”

The remaining 160 stores will stay open as normal while the administrators continue their efforts to find a purchaser for the business.