DEBENHAMS staff and its regular customers will breathe a sigh of relief after discovering the Barrow store is not at imminent risk of closure.

Bosses at the department store chain have announced 19 shops will close this month and thankfully the Portland Walk outlet is not on the list.

However, there are plans to close an additional 28 next year, with the decisions expected to be led by each store's profitability.

With our Marks & Spencer set to close in March it would be nothing short of a travesty if Debs was to follow suit.

Barrow isn't awash with high street chains - we don't have the same range as many large towns.

We don't have a Lush, Lakeland or Laura Ashley.

Superdry, Selfridge's and Sainsburys are also missing from our town.

So now the onus is on us to bolster Barrow's store's chances of surviving the cull.

There is little point in simply moaning when stores are closed - those which are most profitable will be saved.

Barrow has a great range of independent retailers, which we fully support, but smaller shops can only survive if a town centre is attracting shoppers with the big names like Marks & Spencer, Debs, John Lewis and the like.

If we want to save Debs we must put our money where our mouth is.