West Country retailer Trago Mills suffered a fall in profits and sales in the year to December 31, 2008.

Pre-tax profits at the three-store business fell 17% to £1.6m on turnover down by a similar level to £26.2m. In its report and accounts issued this week, the company said its performance was “adversely affected by the recession”.

However, sources close to the company said this year was set to be stronger.

Trago, which is privately owned by local entrepreneur Bruce Robertson, operates stores in Devon and Cornwall, with the majority of sales coming from two giant out-of-town sites in Newton Abbot and Liskeard.