High street camera retailer Jessops has dropped all Pentax-branded cameras from its range of products, spelling the loss of a brand with a history stretching back to 1919.

Britain?s largest photographic retailer said the move followed a review to establish which products meet customer needs at the ?best prices?.

The review has seen Jessops cut its compact camera range from 150 to 50.

A spokeswoman for Jessops confirmed to Amateur Photographer: ?Every season Jessops reviews all of the products they stock and select the best range available for their customers at the most competitive prices.?

She added: ?The best range doesn?t necessarily translate into the biggest range? As part of this review process, Jessops are not ranging any Pentax cameras. However, they will continue to discuss their products with them [Pentax] and will review their range for next season.?

The Leicester-based retailer no longer lists Pentax cameras on its website.

A Pentax UK spokeswoman said: ‘Pentax and Jessops have worked in partnership for many years and continue to do so. Our policy as a company is not to comment on any ongoing discussions with any of our customers.’

In 2007, Jessops said it planned to stock more digital SLRs and less compact cameras as part of a huge shake up of its business that saw it shut down a quarter of its stores.

Before Christmas, Jessops denied a newspaper report which had suggested it was in talks with a camera manufacturer about a possible tie-up, to rebuild its finances.

The denial followed an article in The Daily Mail which claimed that Jessops chairman David Adams was ‘understood to be looking at an idea to team up with a single camera maker rather than selling a range of brands’.

Jessops is due to reveal its preliminary results for the year ended 30 September 2008 within the next few days.

The store reported brisk trading over the Christmas period.

The Jessops chairman was unavailable for comment at the time of writing.