Central England Co-op opens new store in Derbyshire following investment of over £1.7m

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Central England Co-op has officially opened its new store in Openwoodgate, Belper – creating 20 new jobs and investing over £1.7 million in the area.

The Food Store, which is based in Sandbed Lane, offers shoppers an expansive range of products and is fitted out with pioneering new energy efficient refrigeration technologies to minimise environmental impact, LED lighting and a lifesaving defibrillator.

The store also includes a free water refill station and a public use bicycle repair station to support both the local bicycle club community and the amateur cyclist.

To mark the opening in Openwoodgate, colleagues and Central England Co-op President Elaine Dean were joined by children and staff from neighbouring Openwoodgate Pre-School to cut the ribbon and declare the store open.

Children from the school produced a special piece of artwork celebrating the town’s famous Belper Mill and River Gardens, which is featured on the outside of the new store giving the children the chance to see their work every time they visit.

Store manager Angela Allwood said: “It was fantastic to be able to welcome Openwoodgate Pre-School to be our guests of honour at the opening of our brand new store and to see their fantastic artwork recreated on the store.

 “All of us here at Sandbed Lane are proud to be part of such a great community in Openwoodgate and are delighted to welcome everyone to come and enjoy our new store.

“I’d also like to take this opportunity to thank local residents for their patience. It has been long-awaited, but hopefully everyone will enjoy the store as much as we do.”

Alison Frost, Early Years Manager at Openwoodgate Pre-School, said: “We were delighted to be asked to cut the ribbon on the new Central England Co-op store in Openwoodgate and particularly thrilled that the children were asked to produce artwork to be part of the design.

“The children had a great time completing the project and have been so excited to come down and have a tour around the store and see their work proudly displayed.”

The Sandbed Lane Co-operative Food Store is open from 7am to 10pm, Monday to Sunday. The store offers a wide range of products from everyday necessities to something a little more special.

The store offer includes fresh and local fruit and vegetables, an in-store bakery offering breads and pastries, chilled beers and wines, fresh and frozen product, Irresistible product ranges, and a great selection of food to go.

It also offers Lottery, Paypoint, Collect Plus and foreign currency, as well as a Costa Coffee machine, free customer car park, customer seating areas inside and outside the store, phone charging area, customer toilets and a free cash machine.

Customers can also support local good causes as a specialist collection point has been installed for Belper Food Bank.