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Jobs bonanza in store in Lowestoft

PUBLISHED: 10:18 14 August 2009 | UPDATED: 11:31 06 July 2010

SCORES of jobs look set to be created as a new store opens its doors in Lowestoft town centre in the autumn.

Hardware goods chain Wilkinson is poised to move into one of the units at the former Somerfield building in London Road North.

SCORES of jobs look set to be created as a new store opens its doors in Lowestoft town centre in the autumn.

Hardware goods chain Wilkinson is poised to move into one of the units at the former Somerfield building in London Road North.

It will breathe new life into the town, providing a welcome boost to the area in the economic downturn.

And, by moving into Lowestoft, the company could trigger a hive of activity as new shops become available in the town, with individual units at the vacant Woolworths building nearby being worked on this week.

Wilkinson confirmed on their website that they are scheduled to open a new store in Lowestoft in the autumn.

“Some of the stores opening this year will bring additional jobs and affordable products to an area near you,” a spokesman said.

The Wilkinson Group Of Companies has also submitted two planning applications to Waveney District Council, which are currently “pending consideration.”

These are for a “replacement shop front and installation of new shutter to entrance/exit lobby” on the site of the former Somerfield building in London Road North.

And “illuminated advertisement consent - provision of five illuminated fascia signs, one non-illuminated fascia sign, one illuminated hanging sign and three other non-illuminated signs” for the same site.

Earlier this year, The Journal revealed that work had started on the former Somerfield store in Lowestoft, as the clothes shop chain Peacocks transformed one of the units.

And this week, a “delighted” Town Centre Manager, Emma Jones, told The Journal: “As for Wilkinsons coming in to the town I think this is great news for Lowestoft especially at this difficult economic time.

“It proves that we are a promising location for new business and its very positive to see empty units now being filled with the prospects of more before Christmas - it will make for exciting and enjoyable Christmas shopping in Lowestoft this year and of course it is bringing jobs into the town, which is an enormous benefit!” she added.

In January, The Journal revealed that an application in London Road North, including the former Woolworths store site, had already been approved by the district council.

And this week, scaffolding was put up around the building, as QS Stores - adjacent to the former Woolworths - announced the end of their lease as a clearance sale got underway.

The application centred around the “subdivision of existing shops into four retail units and replacement shopfronts.” A further application has since been submitted to the district council for a “proposed retail shop” at 109A London Road North - which is situated between the former Woolworths store and Thomas Cook travel agents.

This application - which is “pending consideration” - is also from Le Sage Associates chartered accountants, who were involved in the earlier approved application for the former Woolworths site.


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