WISBECH: Lidl workers commute to stores in Kings Lynn and March after delays to new Wisbech store
WORKERS at a new cut price supermarket in Wisbech have been forced to commute to other branches in Kings Lynn and March even though the store has been ready for months. Behind the scenes talks have only now revolved access issues and has forced Lidl to re
WORKERS at a new cut price supermarket in Wisbech have been forced to commute to other branches in Kings Lynn and March even though the store has been ready for months.
Behind the scenes talks have only now revolved access issues and has forced Lidl to repeatedly postpone the opening of their new £2.5 million store.
"It's their work, they built the store and they must do it," said a county council spokesman.
Lidl agreed to convert the mini roundabout in Cromwell Road into a junction controlled by traffic lights but talks have dragged on for more than a year.
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Permission was given nearly two years ago for the new store and Lidl had first planned for it to open in time for last Christmas.
Now, with work on the traffic lights due to start in a fortnight- and with an eight week build time- they hope to open in time for this Christmas.
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Company spokesman Robert Beaumont said: "We first recruited, as is our policy, when we thought we were within three months of opening. However it has taken 14 months to negotiate the junction and so the opening was put back."
Up to 40 full and part time jobs will eventually be created once the store - part of a chain of 400 such stores across the UK- is fully operational.
The county council spokesman said Lidl were aware of the conditions when the scheme was approved. Removing the roundabout and installing traffic lights was part of that agreement since, for safety reasons, highways do not allow four points of access onto such roundabouts.
"We're just waiting for them to start, and to finish, the work," he added.
Hundreds of Wisbech residents backed Lidl when plans for the store were announced two years ago and 250 attended a public exhibition.
The only dissenting voice came from former Mayor Carol Cox who described the Lidl store as "cheap and nasty".
However Mr Beaumont added: "We have had a fantastic response and we are gearing up to a great opening.