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Shoppers have been welcomed through the doors of a new Lincoln food store for the first time today.
Lincolnshire Co-op has now opened its outlet on Skellingthorpe Road, which replaced nearby Swanpool Food Store.
The new branch has approximately 50 per cent more sales space, so will offer a larger variety of products and services. The car park is also more accessible and substantially bigger, with 30 spaces, and two electric car charging points.
Inside, the outlet has an innovative eco-friendly refrigeration system that recycles energy produced to heat the store, resulting in a lower global warming impact. Energy usage is also reduced by around 20% due to the installation of fridge doors throughout. A soft plastic recycling service, and a water bottle refill station are also available.
There are products sourced from the area as part of the society's Love Local range, as well as an extensive chilled section, fruit and veg, chilled beers and wines, Costa Express and a Slush machine.
The new shop is part of a £2m investment in the former pub site. Two additional commercial units and a pair of semi-detached houses have also been built.
The Swanpool colleagues have moved to the new branch alongside four new recruits.
Manager Paula Jackson said: “The team and I are enjoying being in our new store and we’ve loved welcoming people in to see what it has to offer.
“We had some of our regulars outside just before 6am as they wanted to be the first customers! We have had some lovely comments. People like the variety we’re able to offer and the new services, like the freshly baked goods and the vegan range. We’ve seen new faces today as well and they have all been very positive too.”
Lincolnshire Co-op’s Community Champions scheme sees the society make a donation to a good cause every time a member shops with their dividend card. The store is currently raising money for St Barnabas Hospice. There is also a food bank collection point in store for Lincoln Food Bank.
The two commercial units next door to the store are under offer. The Lakeside Fish Bar – currently on the Swanpool Food Store site – is set to move into one of the units this spring.
Once the Swanpool site is unoccupied, Lincolnshire Co-op intends to demolish the buildings on the site with a view to develop a plan for housing. This process is in the early stages.
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