A clutch of retailers are circling Maplin’s store estate as its hopes of securing a rescue deal rapidly evaporate.

Retail Week understands that Halfords, Mountain Warehouse and Ryman are leading the chase to snap up pockets of the collapsed chain’s property portfolio.

Cafe chain Pret A Manger is also ready to swoop for sites, should administrators PwC fail in their bid to sell the electricals specialist.

As previously reported by Retail Week, Maplin tumbled into administration two weeks ago, putting 2,500 roles at risk.

Its demise came after rescue talks between its owner Rutland Partners and potential buyer Edinburgh Woollen Mill collapsed.

PwC has insisted it remains “focused on doing all we can to preserve the business while we continue trying to achieve a sale” of all or part of the business.

However, ‘closing down’ signs have been hoisted at a number of Maplin’s stores, including locations on The Strand, in London and its shop in Newcastle.

Retail Week also understands that all four Game concessions inside Maplin stores have shuttered in the wake of PwC’s appointment.

Last week, administrators made 63 redundancies at Maplin’s head offices in London and Rotherham.

PwC partner and joint administrator Toby Underwood said at the time: “It is with real regret that we have made this decision. We are grateful for the support of the employees during this difficult period and we will make every effort to help the affected staff, working with the Maplin HR team over the coming days.

“The company is continuing to trade but due to a lack of interest we may be required to initiate a controlled closure programme.”