HOMEBASE is planning to close a quarter of its stores, putting more than 1,000 jobs at risk.

The new owner of the DIY chain Hilco Capital is due to unveil plans as soon as next week, according to Sky News.

The firm is expected to outline a Company Voluntary Agreement (CVA) that will include plans to close roughly 60 of it's 246 branches.

Hilco bought the hardware store chain for £1 from Australian firm Wesfarmers who paid £340million for what has been dubbed one of the "most disastrous takeovers ever seen".

The exact number of stores due to be axed is still being finalised but could be anything between 50 and 80 stores, including the 18 that have already been closed over the past few months.

If as many of 80 stores are closed then nearly a third of the chain's stores will be wiped from the high street.

The precise number of jobs at risk is also unknown until is it announced what stores will be closed, but experts are speculating that it could be as much as 1,500 - or about 10 per cent of the workforce.

The Australian firm had intended to take on B&Q for the top spot of hardware stores on the high street, but instead it racked up £500million worth of debt.

The troubled business — which employs about 12,000 people — also axed 303 jobs at head office in Milton Keynes in June.

Restructuring experts at Alvarez & Marsal are being scouted by Homebase for the CVA, although other options are also being looked at, it was reported.

The Sun has contacted Homebase for comment.

It's the latest blow to the high street as retailers struggle with rising business rates, competition from online rivals and a slowdown in consumer spending.

Earlier this year, two of the country's largest retailers, Toys R Us and Maplin collapsed putting thousands of jobs at risk.

Last month, Mothercare announced it will shut 60 stores, leading to the loss of hundreds of jobs.

It follows similar moves taken by New Look and Carpetright, which are expected to close 60 and 92 stores respectively, putting hundreds of jobs at risk.