Peacocks chief executive Richard Kirk has been in crunch talks to thrash out a deal to save the value clothing chain with a mystery investor.

The eleventh hour effort followed the Peacock Group filing a notice of intent to appoint an administrator yesterday, after talks to restructure its £240m of debt failed.

It is understood Kirk, who owns 30% of the business, is being backed by an unnamed financial investor and he has the provisional support of the two largest lenders to the retailer, RBS and Barclays, for the plan.

If a deal is agreed, Kirk will need the backing of advisor KPMG.

A notice of intent to appoint an administrator was also filed against Peacock Group’s other chain, value retailer Bonmarche. But an acquisition by private equity firm Sun European is thought to be lined up for a Bonmarché acquisition.