ICONIC Mid Wales fashion brand Laura Ashley has slashed a further 146 jobs at its Newtown manufacturing base.

Administrators say the redundancies are due to dwindling stock and the closure of the website.

Asked whether the latest redundancies are the final ones at its Newtown factories, administrator PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) said that "unless we find a buyer for the business we do expect there will be further redundancies as the stocks are run down."

Laura Ashley's fashion and home furnishing business, was put into administration in March after years of financial difficulties.

Around 550 workers were employed by Laura Ashley in Newtown, and hundreds have been made redundant.

Conservative MS for Montgomeryshire Russell George said: "The job losses at Laura Ashley, an iconic and major employer in the Newtown area – would have been headline news if it weren’t for the current pandemic. It was devastating news that retail and manufacturing operations will cease. This news couldn’t have come at a worse time.

"Craig Williams MP, Newtown Mayor Cllr David Selby, and I have met virtually with Welsh Government and Powys County Council officials as we seek reassurance and support for the many people who have been affected.

"Along will Craig Williams MP, over the past couple of weeks I've had a number of further meetings with former Laura Ashley staff and others, in a bid to retain an operation in Newtown".

Anyone that has been made redundant can contact the Department of Work & Pensions if they have any questions on nmw.employmentteam@dwp.gov.uk The ReAct Service – operated by Careers Wales, can provide a package of support in gaining new skills and improves chances of returning to work. These include £1,500 towards vocational training and up to £3,000 to wage costs. People can telephone 0800 028 4844 or find more info at careerswales.gov.wales

For people to check if their pension is affected by insolvency, they should visit www.pensionprotectionfund.co.uk and for independent advice on pensions, people can visit www.pensionadvisoryservice.org.uk