TJ Hughes to open store in Ipswich

TOWN centre retailers were celebrating after an announcement today from national budget department store chain TJ Hughes that it will open a store in Ipswich by the summer.

TOWN centre retailers were celebrating after an announcement today from national budget department store chain TJ Hughes that it will open a store in Ipswich by the summer.

The Liverpool-based discount chain will take the place of Allders in the Buttermarket shopping centre, bringing to an end months of speculation over who would fill the vacuum left by the collapsed chain.

The 110,000sq ft store will be the first opened by TJ Hughes in the county and is expected to lead to dozens of new jobs in the town.

Today Robin Dickie, chief executive of TJ Hughes, said: “Despite being new to the region, we are delighted that the store is already creating such interest in Ipswich.

“We are going the extra distance to create a spacious, yet contemporary feel for our new Ipswich store and I look forward to our official opening later this year.”

The Ipswich store will be TJ Hughes' 51st outlet in the UK and will be one of 12 new stores opened by the company in the next 12 months.

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The company's property director Richard Foggin said the new store should be opened by “early summer”.

The final agreement between the Buttermarket and TJ Hughes was signed on Tuesday, with the official handover due to take place on Monday.

Colin Roberts, Buttermarket centre manager, said the deal was a major win for the shopping centre, which has been vying with other centres around the country to fill the void left by Allders.

He said: “There is a certain amount of euphoria with it. There are still an awful lot of empty ex-Allders presses around the country.

“We believe it shows a huge amount of confidence in the Buttermarket. Space users of 100,000-plus sq ft just do not grow on trees.

“I'm thrilled. It's going to be a huge advantage to Ipswich.

“It's very much an Ipswich-type retailer. I'm confidently predicting it will bring three, four or five times the number of people to the centre that Allders ever did.”

TJ Hughes sells products ranging from fashion items to housewares, fragrances and electrical.

Weblink: www.tjhughes.co.uk

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