Debenhams is preparing to reopen for a huge closing down sale next week.

Last year, the 242-year-old department store chain said its administrators “regretfully” decided to start winding down operations after JD Sports pulled out of a possible rescue deal.

Debenhams have now confirmed they will reopen stores on Monday (April 12) , as coronavirus restrictions ease, to clear stock before they close permanently.

The retailer will have discounts for up to 70 per cent off fashion and home and up to 50 per cent off beauty items.

In a message on its website the brand said: "Following the latest government guidelines, we're preparing to re-open our stores.

"We plan to re-open stores on 12th April."

Stores will be open for between three and five weeks, depending on the stock levels.

The department store is yet to reveal which stores will reopen their doors but further details on the final closing down sale are expected to be revealed on Thursday (April 8).

Last year, Geoff Rowley, of FRP Advisory, joint administrator to Debenhams, said: “All reasonable steps were taken to complete a transaction that would secure the future of Debenhams.

“However, the economic landscape is extremely challenging and, coupled with the uncertainty facing the UK retail industry, a viable deal could not be reached.

“The decision to move forward with a closure programme has been carefully assessed and, while we remain hopeful that alternative proposals for the business may yet be received, we deeply regret that circumstances force us to commence this course of action.

“We are very grateful for the efforts of the management team and staff who have worked so hard throughout the most difficult of circumstances to keep the business trading.”

A total of 12,000 jobs are at risk with the company closure.