Ipswich: New Waitrose store could create 380 jobs
IPSWICH: Up to 380 jobs could be created if supermarket giant Waitrose opens a store in Ipswich, The Evening Star has learned.
As revealed yesterday, Waitrose has unveiled proposals to move on to the former Crane site in Nacton Road.
Between 300 and 380 jobs could be created at the site while there could be work for up to 20 people at a smaller convenience store which the company wants to create in the ground floor of the Corn Exchange in the town centre.
Waitrose is owned by the John Lewis Partnership – and the company is determined to have a John Lewis presence at Nacton Road.
It is still not clear whether the firm will build a “Waitrose Food and Home” store at the site – which combines a large supermarket with home lines from John Lewis – or build a separate supermarket and small department store.
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If a single store is built it would employ between 300 and 350 people. If two separate stores are built the number employed could rise to 380 between them.
Richard Atkins, Ipswich councillor with responsibility for economic development, said he could not comment on Waitrose’s proposals to move to Nacton Road – the site of the former Crane engineering works – or to the town centre because of his position on the planning committee that will have to consider any application.
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However he said he was delighted a major company was seeking to here.
He said: “When a group like the John Lewis Partnership is so keen to establish a strong presence in Ipswich it indicates that they see this as a town that has a bright future.
“It has long been said that once the university gets established in the town it will encourage more relatively high-earning people into the area and that is the kind of people that Waitrose and John Lewis will be targeting.
“Their determination to come here is good news for the town.”
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