More than 1,000 staff at Ethel Austin have been made redundant after the firm’s administrator closed 114 shops.
The fashion retailer and its sister company Au Naturale went into administration in January for the second time in two years.
Administrator MCR said most of the closing stores would stop trading by the end of the week, with the loss of 1,048 jobs.
Poor sales over the Christmas period and bad weather in January were blamed for the administration, the Times reported.
Geoff Bouchier, MCR’s joint administrator, said: “In light of the current economic climate these stores identified for closure did not attract a purchaser. Regrettably, as a result of their current financial performance, these stores will shortly cease to trade.
“We are still hopeful of selling the remaining business and discussions are ongoing with a number of interested parties.”
The remaining 162 stores will stay open while a buyer is sought.
Before going into administration, the group had employed more than 3,700 people across its stores.