POPULAR toy retailer The Entertainer is to close its 172 shops as it puts the health of staff and customers ahead of profit during he coronavirus crisis.

The company, which has a shop on Broughton Shopping Park, closed all outlets at 5pm today (Monday, March 23)

The says the decision is based on putting its staff and customers "ahead of profits" during the coronavirus outbreak and that it will provide resources online for parents to keep children entertained at home.

A statement said: "The Entertainer has announced plans to close its 172 stores across the country putting the welfare of its employees and customers ahead of profits during this difficult Covid-19 pandemic.

"All stores will close at 5pm this evening until further notice, with customers directed to shopping online viathetoyshop.com where there are thousands of great boredom busting games, crafts and toys available and elc.co.uk where parents can find a host of educational toys to aid learning and development.

"The website and social channels will also provide a hub of resources for parents who are looking to keep the kids entertained at home including downloadable activity sheets and great ideas for ways to play in the garden."