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Sports retailer and gym group DW Sports has said it is to tumble into administration, with 1,700 employees at risk.

The company was expected to appoint insolvency specialists after its income was wiped out by the protracted closure of stores and gyms during lockdown.

DW Sports, which was founded by former Wigan Athletic owner Dave Whelan, operated 73 gyms and 75 retail sites across the UK but announced plans to shut 25 of its stores last month.

The company said it will now wind down its retail business for good, with its website ceasing trading with immediate effect and closing-down sales starting at its 50 remaining stores.

READ MORE: Glasgow firm has helped keep lights on amid coronavirus lockdown

It plans to protect as many jobs and gyms as possible through the restructuring process.

DW Sports stressed that Fitness First, which is a sister company of DW, will continue to

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