Community to be at the heart of expanded superstore
PUBLISHED: 17:03 24 October 2019 | UPDATED: 17:31 24 October 2019
Supporting the community will be a key aspect of a revamped Suffolk supermarket, according to its bosses.
The Morrisons superstore in Sproughton Road, Ipswich has been undergoing a multi-million pound revamp after the supermarket purchased the former Namco Funscape bowlling alley.
Namco Funscape shut its doors in January after citing poor trading conditions. An application to demolish the funscape building and refurbish Morrisons was submitted later that month and was approved in June.
The store invited youngsters from the children's charity CLIC Sargent, which the company has been supporting all year, to come along and help with the store's re-opening.
One of these youngsters was Jack Ruddock from Bury St Edmunds, who has leukaemia.
Jack was invited to open the new store after his father Gareth took part in a charity cycle there in the summer.
Jack's mum, Yasmin said: "It came completely as a surprise.
"Jack was excited but very overwhelmed.
"It's lovely to see him out and having a good time."
Morrisons store manager Paul Tracey said it was important to work with the community.
"We've got a brand new community room. We really want to get involved in Ipswich and serve our customers better than we ever have," said Mr Tracey.
"It's something we can give back. We want to get anyone in to do something; whether it's a school group, mum's group or knit and knatter.
"It's just a good opportunity for us to say if you need it we have got it."
The community room will be free of charge for groups to use and is just one of several internal changes to the store.
The shop's cafe has also been refurbished with a new barista bar and expanded clothing and home department.
The expanded store is just one part of larger redevelopment plan at the site.
A new access road has also been created in the new work with small upgrades having also been made to the existing petrol station.
A few minor jobs remain at the store for now with a much larger overhaul planned for the petrol station in the new year which will include a new convenience-style shop.