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Relief and excitement builds as retailer announces it's moving into a two-storey former flagship M&S store

PUBLISHED: 13:59 15 February 2019

The Guineas Shopping Centre in Newmarket. Picture: GOOGLE MAPS

The Guineas Shopping Centre in Newmarket. Picture: GOOGLE MAPS

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A big name retailer is moving into the site of a former Marks and Spencer store in a Suffolk town centre.

A B&M Bargains store in Culverhouse. Picture: B&MA B&M Bargains store in Culverhouse. Picture: B&M

In a long-awaited move, the discount chain B&M is moving into the former home of Marks and Spencer in the Guineas Shopping Centre in Newmarket next month.

The 14,558 sq ft site, which extends over two floors, has been empty since M&S left the town six months ago.

The opening, which will create 40 jobs, is a welcome boost to the local economy, as Newmarket has also seen the closure of its Asda store last December following M&S’s closure in August.

MORE: Can Debenhams stores in Suffolk and Essex survive the retail slump?

B&M stores launch and new frozen food department at their Edge Lane store in LiverpoolB&M stores launch and new frozen food department at their Edge Lane store in Liverpool

Although a new Aldi supermarket is scheduled to open in Newmarket in the Autumn, building work appears not to have progressed at the site on Exning Road.

B&M is one of the UK’s fastest growing retailers, selling products including toys, food and drink, pet supplies, health and beauty and homewares.

Unlike many other retail chains that have been shutting down stores lately, B&M is embarking on a massive nationwide expansion drive.

The bargain chain has only recently opened stores in Lowestoft and Bury St Edmunds, and is now opening new stores on Canvey Island in Essex, Nottingham, West Yorkshire, Scotland and Northern Ireland over the next month, as well as in Newmarket.

When B&M opens the new store on March 16, it means that unlike many other shopping centres in the UK right now, the Guineas Centre will be fully occupied. The centre is also home to 46 other businesses, including Claire’s Accessories, Costa, Argos, Pandora, Card Factory, Roman, and Select.

The centre manager for The Guineas Shopping Centre, Ross Mckittrick, expressed excitement at the arrival of B&M.

“They’ll be a great addition to the centre, and will occupy an anchor store,” he said. “B&M is one of the UK’s fastest growing variety retailers, and their decision to open at The Guineas is testament to the quality of our shopping centre and Newmarket.”

A manager of a shop in the centre said the announcement was “great news” for retailers at the centre, and hoped it would bring in increased footfall, which would have a knock on effect on other shops.

A spokesperson for B&M, said: “We’re really excited to be opening our first ever store in Newmarket and we hope customers are going to be delighted with it.

“We’ve just got the keys so the team are currently working hard to transform the site so we can get the doors open and welcome our new customers through the door in a few weeks.”

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