Children from Sutton on Sea Community Primary School were among the guests of honour at the opening of the new Co-op store in Station Road yesterday (Thursday).
The youngsters helped to cut the ribbon and declare the new store open for the community, with their school receiving a £250 donation towards its school funds as part of launch day celebrations, as did the Meridale Youth and Community Centre.
The opening of the new Co-op store follows an investment of almost £625,000, creating 16 jobs.
It includes an in-store bakery, car parking and Costa, alongside its focus on fresh, healthy foods, meal ideas, award winning wines and essentials.
The store also brings a funding boost for local good causes through its membership scheme, with members receiving a 5 per cent reward on the purchase of own-branded products and services, with the Co-op donating a further 1 per cent to local good causes.
Jayne Snowden, Co-op Store Manager, said: “We have had a great response, our first day has gone even better than we had hoped for and we are delighted that the children and other members of the community took part in our launch or popped in to see us on our special day.
“We are delighted to have carried out such a significant investment in Sutton on Sea – we are really looking forward to serving the community, and welcoming members and customers into their new Co-op.
“We are proud to be part of the community, and our ambition is to ensure the store is a local hub, a real asset for the community.”
Phil Cooper, Co-op Area manager, added: “The Co-op is moving forward with a clear purpose and momentum, investing in our stores, people, products and prices to be closer to the needs of our members, customers and communities. We want shoppers to know that they can become a co-owner and member of their Co-op. And, that we are also giving back to the community.
“Our members make a difference locally, simply by swiping their membership card when they shop with us they are raising much needed funding for organisations in the area who contribute to improving local life.”