THERE is a glimmer of hope for the 79 workers at Magor's Wilko warehouse who lost their jobs earlier this week, after a union representing staff said there had been "some interest" from potential buyers to snap up the collapsed retailer’s warehouses.

About 1,300 people were thought to be employed at the warehouses in Magor and Worksop, Nottinghamshire - but hundreds of redundancies have already been announced.

On Thursday 79 people at the distribution centre in Magor were made redundant.

The GMB Union, which has about 3,000 members who worked for the former retailer, said it was hoping a deal might mean staff can be re-employed.

“We have been working with several associations with a view of finding potential buyers for the warehouses in the hope that they will re-employ many of you,” the union said in a bulletin to affected staff.

“We are pleased to say we have had some interest in this, and we will vigorously chase these up in the hope of gaining new opportunities for you.”

Earlier this week, administrators from PwC said there would be 299 redundancies across the two warehouse sites.

It adds to 269 support staff at the Worksop site being made redundant following an announcement last week.

More redundancies have been expected there as so far no one has bid to buy the sites.

PwC also confirmed the closure of 52 shops across the UK, leading to 1,016 staff having their last days with the retailer when they shut down next week.

Meanwhile, rival retailer B&M swooped in to buy 51 Wilko stores, but the future of the approximately 1,000 staff working across them hangs in the balance.

GMB also criticised previous management of the beleaguered chain for failing to rescue the business and protect jobs.

It said: “We make no apology for placing the blame squarely on the shoulders of the previous family director and board chair, and will continue to highlight her role in destroying what was a successful business whilst taking millions in dividends.”

Lisa Wilkinson, granddaughter of the founder, stepped down as chairwoman of the board earlier this year after the group secured emergency cash funding in the hope of stabilising the business.

Chief executive Mark Jackson said the management team “left no stone unturned” in attempting to revive Wilko in the lead-up to its collapse last month.