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Homebase Aylesford to re-open 12 months after fire

The part firefighters played in putting out the massive Homebase blaze will be recognised when a new store opens almost a year to the day its predecessor was destroyed.

Larkfield fire station watch manager Joe Luque was due to cut the ribbon for the DIY store's opening at the Aylesford Retail Park and launch the festivities, including a family fun day today

Mr Luque said: "I am pleased I can help celebrate the reopening of a store that was devastated by the ferocious fire a year ago.

"The incident was a hugely demanding one that required the resources, skill and tireless efforts of many Kent Fire and Rescue Service personnel, Homebase staff and others.

"It is great to see the store begin to trade again."

A total of 106 full- and part-time jobs have been secured by the reopening of the redesigned unit, which will include a central decorating hub, new garden centre and coffee shop.

kmfm will be broadcasting live to mark the occasion, and the shop will be brimming with a range of activities and attractions for the family.

Store manager Ian Allcock said: "It was always a family store and we have got a better store to go back to, so there is a really good feeling. People are bursting with pride."

The day will also raise funds for the Teenage Cancer Trust, Homebase's charity partner.

Source :

14 May 2011
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