LAURA Ashley is the latest retailer to hit trouble.

According to the BBC, the fashion and homeware chain, which has a store at Poole Retail Park, is in talks with its lender to try to access enough money to allow it to continue trading.

Shares in the store have slumped by 41 per cent since the announcement.

The retailer said if it could not get enough funding it would need to "consider all appropriate options".

Sales fell by nearly 11 per cent in the second half of 2019, it said.

Laura Ashley's majority shareholder is the Malaysian group MUI.

In a stock market announcement today (Monday), Laura Ashley welcomed the talks on funding between MUI and Wells Fargo, and said it was issuing a statement in "response to press speculation".

Chairman Andrew Khoo said: "We acknowledge recent trading conditions, in line with the overall UK retail market, have indeed been challenging,"

He said there was a robust plan in place to turn the business around.