Robert Swannell will stay on as chairman of entertainment retailer HMV despite agreeing to take up the same position at Marks and Spencer next year.

Swannell today resigned from his directorships at landlord British Land and 3i Group, the private equity firm, as a result of taking the high profile job at M&S.

However, an HMV spokesman said: “Robert will remain the chairman of HMV.”

A source close to the situation said it is a long term decision and that Swannell will work both jobs simultaneously.

Marks and Spencer confirmed today that he would be succeeding Sir Stuart Rose at M&S, joining the board on October 4 before taking up the position of chairman on January 4, when Rose will step down.