Collapsed gift retailer Past Times is unlikely to be salvaged out of administration as KPMG embarks on a store closure strategy, it is understood.

Although administrator KPMG is continuing to talk to interested parties while it trades the remaining 50 stores as a going concern, it is believed a deal to save stores and around 500 jobs will be “very unlikely”, a source told Retail Week.

On Monday, KPMG closed the first Past Times store since it collapsed into administration, which was located in Belfast.

Since the retailer was plunged into administration on January 16, all stores have launched Closing Down sales and gradual closures will take place dependent on store performance.