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Work starts on Home Bargains' 70m regional DC

WORK on a massive £70 million regional distribution centre at Solstice Park near Amesbury is set to begin next week.

Ground preparations are being carried out at the site ahead of the 700,000 sq ft warehouse and supporting buildings being constructed for discount retailer Home Bargains’ southern distribution hub.

The distribution centre will create 1,200 jobs in Amesbury and it is expected many other local companies will benefit from Home Bargains’ decision to base its distribution centre in the town.

The Liverpool-based family- owned company has large expansion plans and wants to grow from around 300 stores to 700 nationwide.

It plans to open hundreds of new shops across the south, including in Salisbury and Amesbury, and says the regional distribution centre will be critically important.

“We’re really pleased to be at this stage where full planning permission is in place and work can begin,” said operations director Joe Morris, from Home Bargains’ parent company TJ Morris.

“We are opening new shops all the time and this regional distribution centre will allow us to move further into the south of England.

“We want to have 700 stores – that has been our plan for a long time.

“This is going to bring a lot of new jobs to Amesbury and we’re looking forward to having close links with the local community.”

In addition to two huge warehouses, Solstice Park will also be home to the company’s southern management training centre, which 170 people a year will attend.

The plans also include offices, the retail training centre – with a shop, café, training rooms and residential accommodation – and two gatehouses.

And there will also be a vehicle maintenance unit and new access, internal roads and parking as well as landscape planting.

The buildings will be slightly lower than originally planned and restrictions will be in place to prevent noise and light pollution that concerned some residents living nearby.

Fences are being put up around the site this week and the work is expected to take up to two years to complete.

Cliff Whitley, development manager at Solstice Park, said: “The commencement of construction of Home Bargains’ £70m regional distribution centre, creating valuable jobs, underlines Solstice Park’s growing stature as the location for businesses to be in central southern England.

“With the excellent road links, attractive infrastructure and proximity to a strong labour pool at Amesbury, backed by a major local house-building programme of some 2,200 new homes, Solstice Park is now very much a key player in the regional economy.

“What is being created here is a flourishing business park, generating its own momentum.’

Source : Jill Harding – Salisbury Journal
www.salisburyjournal.co.uk/news/10612286.Work_starts_on___70m_hub_creating_1_200_new_jobs/

18 August 2013
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