High-street photography retailer, Jessops, has taken a big step towards securing its future by agreeing a £49 million banking facility.

The company had been struggling to stay afloat, having cut 550 jobs and closed 81 shops in the last year.

However, chairman David Adams said the deal, agreed in principal with HSBC, would put Jessops on a firm financial footing for the next three years and remove any uncertainty surrounding the company.

Pre-tax losses in the six months to March 30 were more than £11.2 million, and there was a 24.7% fall in total sales.

However, Mr Adams said that investment in its stores and staff should position the company for growth. Jessops, which sells more than 33 per cent of all the single lens reflex cameras in Britain, has benefited from the growth in sales of more upmarket cameras.

It is the fall in camera prices that Jessops has struggled with, as more general retailers move in on the market with cut prices - supermarkets in particular.

The value of the digital still camera market has fallen 1.6 per cent, despite a 10.9 per cent rise in cameras sold.