MILLIONS of pounds of investment will be invested in a food superstore which could create dozens of new jobs.
Despite the credit crunch, supermarket giant Tesco has major plans to expand its Helsby site – which opened just three years ago – by almost half its size again.
If planning permission is granted the Chester Road store will:
Attract more people to Helsby
Stock new lines and more products
Have a larger shopping area and a café
Tesco corporate affairs manager Michael Kissman said: “We are expanding the Helsby store because we have spoken to our customers and acted accordingly. Any expansion and improvement will provide new jobs for the area too.”
The supermarket was opened on the former BICC site at Mere’s Edge, Chester Road, in September 2005 creating 170 jobs. After a struggling start, when the store failed to hit targets and could not attract customers, proposals are in place to expand the site by 1,500 square metres.
Building owners Brookhouse designs’ include extensions to the sides and upwards into the roof of the store and would provide an additional shopping area; customer cafe and improved staff areas.
Andrew Brown planning and land manager of Brookhouse said: “It is an investment we are looking to make and we are committed to it.”
Helsby parish council chairman George Randles said: “The parish council has no objections. The expansion won’t change the height of the building, there will be a second floor cafe and bistro and we are told more product lines, like clothing, will be sold in the shop. It will create more jobs and it will attract more people to the store.”
A Vale Royal Borough council spokeswoman explained: “Tesco at Helsby has applied for planning permission to extend the existing food store and associated mezzanine floor, the latter of which will include a café. The development will also include alteration of the service yard and development of staff car parking.
She added: “A decision on the proposal should be made by 16 October, unless the application has to go to planning committee.”