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Debenhams was once a high street gem, can it ever be great again?

Mike Ashley called the retailer’s fall from grace “a national tragedy”. The founder of Sports Direct was no doubt smarting from the fact Debenhams’ lenders had rejected his offer of financial backing - but that doesn’t stop his words from carrying a central truth.

Debenhams has been a British staple for nearly 250 years and it is sad to see how it has floundered for most of this century.

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