New Asda store creates 200 Suffolk jobs

MORE than 200 jobs have been created at Asda's new store in Ipswich, which opens its doors for trading this month.

Graham Dines

MORE than 200 jobs have been created at Asda's new store in Ipswich, which opens its doors for trading this month.

The Stoke Park development is just one of a number of “Fightback” boosts for the Ipswich economy, which is bucking the recession being felt elsewhere in the country.

The town is benefiting from a vote of confidence by the hotel industry. Premier Inn has just opened its 75-bedroom complex at The Beagle, Chantry Park, and earlier in the summer, the Ramada group's Encore hotel started trading in Ranelagh road.

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Meanwhile, the �4 million extension to the four-star Salthouse Harbour Hotel on the Waterfront is nearing completion.

Designed by architects Barefoot & Giles and built by ISG Jackson, the extension will provide the Salthouse Harbour with 27 additional bedrooms, an extended restaurant, dining area and reception, opening in October.

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The transfer of DanceEast staff from cramped town centre accommodation to the new �9 million Jerwood DanceHouse on the Waterfront has started, which will establish Ipswich as a national centre for excellence.

Nearby, work has started on the construction of 220-seat Witchbottle Theatre for Red Rose Chain Film and Theatre Company, which has received a donation of �75,000 from the borough council.

Next week will see the completion of Tarmac's new asphalt plant at Cliff Quay. The operation is being moved from the island site, which will free up a valuable redevelopment area.

Next month, the new �70 m Suffolk New College will open, providing 22,000 sq metres of accommodation to the north of the existing site. The heart of the new building is the three-storey central atrium, a striking meeting, exhibition and learning space.

Richard Atkins, planning and economic development portfolio holder at Ipswich council, said the scale of development showed the town was playing a major part in leading the region out of recession.

“We are one of the fastest growing urban centres in the UK and can see much evidence of an economic fight-back. These are not goals or aspirations; they are actual developments and is evidence of the progress we are making. This is good news for business, for jobs and for the local economy in general.”

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