AS STAFF at a town centre store prepare to cash up tills for the final time employees working in a shop metres away wait to hear their fate.
The axe has fallen on 'Birthdays' in Nuneaton Market Place leaving all full and part time staff to deal with the reality of being left jobless.
The fate of nearby Clinton Cards, which owns the Birthdays stores, is yet to be decided.
Although an exact date is not set, the Birthdays store, which has been selling greetings cards to shoppers for years, will close for good one day in the next few weeks.
The Hinckley 'Birthdays' branch in Castle Street will also close after a final sale, as will the remaining 139 Birthdays stores located around the UK.
The drastic decision has been made by administrators Peter Saville, Simon Freakley and Anne O’Keefe, Partners at Corporate Advisory and Restructuring specialists Zolfo Cooper who were appointed over Clinton Cards Plc, which owned the chain earlier this month.
The giant retailer was forced into administration after the company's banks Barclays and Royal Bank of Scotland sold Clinton Cards' £35m of loans to supplier, American Greetings.
It is suggested that trade suffered as a result of the increasing popularity of online competitors and large supermarkets and figures showed a pretax loss of £3.7m in the 26 weeks to the end of January, compared with a profit of £11.7m in the previous year.
Peter Saville, Joint Administrator and Partner at Zolfo Cooper said: "Given the sheer size of the Clinton Cards retail estate and the overall performance, we were left with no alternative to the difficult decision.
"I am hopeful that the action we have taken will allow us to preserve value in the core underlying business, thereby allowing us and potential buyers to focus on a profitable and viable retail estate going forward."
The Joint Administrators have been assessing the financial position of the company and have also announced they will close 200 Clinton Cards stores.
Exact locations will be revealed soon and staff at the Nuneaton store are just some of the thousands of employees that could face the chop.