Marks and Spencer is to close two major distribution centres in Derbyshire and Sheffield, putting 662 jobs at risk.

The hub in Long Eaton, Derbyshire is run by DHL while the DC in Thorncliffe, Sheffield is operated by XPO.

The struggling retailer attributed the closures which are planned for 2021, to efforts to cut costs and improve stock availability.

The DC closures follow M&S depot closures at Hardwick, near Warrington and Neasden in west London in 2018 and will leave M&S’s clothing business operating out of just six warehouses from 2021.

The planned closures are part of an M&S five-year transformation programme which includes the creation of a single-tier Clothing and Home logistics network.

The new system aims to cut costs by moving products more quickly from suppliers to stores and by having fewer large DCs.

Read more

In a statement the retailer said: “We’re in the early stages of changing our supply chain to address flow of product and availability for our customers. As part of this we will no longer be serving our stores from our Thorncliffe and Long Eaton distribution centres,” M&S said.

“Moving the operations is not a decision we have taken lightly but it is an important change to help us best serve our customers as we move to a nationally connected network. Our logistics partners will be working closely with the colleagues at the sites on what is best for them.”

A spokesperson for DHL said: “As M&S transitions to a nationally connected supply chain network it is proposing to close its Long Eaton regional distribution centre in spring 2021, with the DHL-operated transport office relocating to M&S’ distribution centre at Castle Donington.

"Our affected warehouse staff have been informed and will shortly enter into consultation with the company and union representatives to discuss its implications and their options, including the possibility of redeploying to other DHL operations locally.

"M&S stresses the decision is part of wider plans to modernise its supply chain and in no way reflects on the high levels of service delivered by the team at Long Eaton over the years.

"We will continue to work in partnership with M&S at several of its nationally connected sites.”

An XPO spokesperson added: "Following a review of their operations, our customer has decided to withdraw its operations from the M&S Thorncliffe warehouse. We have entered into a consultation period with colleagues, the trade union and elected employee representatives to finalise the plans. We will work to support employees through this time."