New Lidl store to open in town next month
PUBLISHED: 14:44 10 November 2019 | UPDATED: 09:52 11 November 2019
A town on the border of Norfolk and Suffolk is set to welcome a new discount supermarket within the next month.
Plans were approved for the construction of a new Lidl store in Beccles in April 2018, despite objections from the town's nearby Tesco.
At a planning committee meeting, Tesco submitted an objection to the plans questioning the retail impact assessment, which Lidl successfully disputed.
It has been a long process for the chain to get approval and permissions to develop the new store, which is on the former site of Carcom Bodyworks and Beccles Car Centre on Common Lane North.
However, after many setbacks and delays, the supermarket has finally confirmed that the new store will open on Beccles in less than a month on Thursday, December 5.
After one Halesworth resident tweeted at the store to ask for any date on when the new store would be opening - as she was really looking forward to having a store a little bit closer, especially the baking section - the store announced it would open its newest branch at the beginning of December.
The store will create 44 full-time jobs for local people, and will feature 1,325 square metres of retail floor space and include 115 free customer parking spaces.
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Around 1,000 people travel from Beccles to Lowestoft to visit the nearest Lidl and it is hoped the new store will encourage these residents to stay in the town, according to the store.
Speaking in August last year, shortly after plans were first submitted, the owner of Sweet Memories sweetshop in New Market, Jon Sexton, said the new store is good news for businesses in the town centre.
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He said: "I think in this day and age a large business coming into town can only benefit Beccles.
"A large commercial business that can advertise and bring people into the town can only be a good thing."
Also speaking then, Beccles resident Rachel Daniels said: "The shops in town all have their niches and will be no more affected by Lidl arriving than they already are by Tesco.
"I can't wait for Lidl to open, it saves me travelling all the way to Lowestoft."
The supermarket will operate from 7am to 10pm Monday to Saturday and from 10am to 4pm on Sundays.