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Barnsley’s Stairfoot B&Q closing to make room for Sainsbury’s

At least 240 jobs will be created at a new Sainsbury's in Barnsley when the supermarket chain takes over B&Q's Stairfoot store.

The supermarket chain has exchanged contracts with B&Q to redevelop the DIY retailer's store on Bleachcroft Way.

Business at the store is currently restricted to the sale of DIY products but subject to Barnsley Council lifting that restriction, the main building will be converted to a Sainsbury's.

Sainsbury's says at least 240 new jobs will be created by the proposed redevelopment, on top of those already employed by B&Q, and staff at B&Q will be offered the opportunity of an interview at Sainsbury's.

Grant Anderson, the divisional director for B&Q east, said: "We have been in Barnsley for 32 years and it is with regret that we announce our intention to close the store.

"As our Dearne Valley store at the Cortonwood Retail Park is nearby, we believe we are well set to continue to serve our customers in Barnsley after the current store on Bleachcroft Way has closed.

"We are committed to working with Sainsbury's to do everything possible to minimise the impact of the closure for our employees."

Sainsbury's has informed Barnsley Council of its intentions for the proposed store, which has a sales area of 72,000 sq ft.

The supermarket will now consult with local people over the proposals, prior to submitting a planning application to lift the retail restriction on the building and make other changes needed, before opening the new store.

Bruno Moore, head of town planning for Sainsbury's, said: "We intend to hold a public exhibition about our proposals in September, and will be in touch with neighbouring residents and businesses to discuss our plans over the summer months.

"We're very excited about the possibility of opening a new store in Barnsley and playing a big role in the local community."

Councillor Karen Dyson said it was excellent for the Stairfoot area and she was particularly pleased with the number of jobs being created.

"It is B&Q's choice to move on, and Sainsbury's going in there is excellent news. It's also good that B&Q staff are being given the chance of an opportunity for an interview at Sainsbury's.

"It's a positive sign that Sainsbury's wants to come to Stairfoot because it would just be an empty unit otherwise."

Owen Gleadall, president at the Barnsley and Rotherham Chamber of Commerce, said it is fantastic news.

"It is sad we are losing B&Q because in terms of the DIY offering for the town that's our biggest provider."

He said it is always a worry about what sort of impact out-of-town developments will have on Barnsley town centre, but said what Sainsbury's is offering is 'completely different'.

Source : Katia Harston - Barnsley Chronicle
www.barnsley-chronicle.co.uk/news/article/6682/240-jobs-follow-sainsburys-into-town

29 June 2013
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