Sir David Jones is to step down from his role of chairman at JJB Sports due to ill health.

Jones, who was diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease in 1982, will remain as a non-executive director of the company. He will hand over his executive responsibilities to chief executive Keith Jones when he takes up his position on March 1.

John Clare, the retailer’s senior independent director, will become acting chairman until a permanent appointment is made.

JJB Sports reported like-for-like sales for the year to January 24 slumped 28%. Total group revenue for the period was 51% down.

Since the half year, the retailer said like-for-likes have improved from down 37% in August to down 21% in January. It said its Sale ran longer this year because of the snow, and sales online in January have increased by 28% like-for-like.

The retailer reiterated that lack of new stock has damaged sales. It said this position is improving with new spring ranges received and further deliveries due in the coming months. It is on target to be fully stocked by April 2010.

The JJB board also revealed David Adams and Sir Matthew Pinsent will join as non-executive directors. Adams is currently executive chairman of Jessops and chairman of Moss Bros, while Pinsent has a distinguished rowing career winning 4 Olympic gold medals, and is now a broadcaster.

Jones joined JJB in 2007, and is renowned for turning around Next. He became embroilled in scandal at JJB over a loan to Mike Ashley at competitor Sports Direct.