A HIGH street brand has announced a swathe of store closures - but its branches in York currently look safe.

GAME has confirmed plans to shut 40 stores across the UK and has already served notice on 27 branches. The video game store which has outlets in Church Street, York, and at Monks Cross, plans to do the same on the additional sites "in the near future" but has not yet revealed the full list.

It has more than 250 shops nationwide. The closures are believed to be due to a challenging retail market, and high business rates.

"We are facing a challenging retail market and GAME with its extensive retail footprint needs to restructure and landlords need to work with us in setting realistic, fair rents," said a spokesman.

GAME's casualties include areas such as Mansfield, Canterbury, Watford, Glasgow Fort, Leicester, Derby, Norwich Chapelfield, Lakeside, Bexleyheath and Carmarthen.

It is a fresh blow to the high street, with retailers facing challenging times. Links of London has just closed in York. and The Essence of Peru announced it would shut up shop on Sunday, January 12.

Bags specialist Zatchels in Shambles shut just before Christmas along with the York branch of Debenhams in Davygate as part of the retail chain's programme of closures. Gap and French Connection, also in Davygate, closed last year. Sports Direct, Davygate, also closed, but a branch opened in Coney Street.