AFTER weeks of waiting, supermarket giant Marks and Spencer will unveil its latest Simply Food store in Swindon this morning.
The brand new unit at Mannington Retail Park is to be launched at a ribbon-cutting ceremony at 10am as shoppers are expected to rush to see the shop and get first pick at more than 4,500 food and drink items.
Visitors will be treated to a complimentary glass of prosecco before their mad dash around the store, and will be entered into a competition to win a share of £1,000 in M&S gift cards with Jack FM between noon and 2pm.
Tuesday saw staff prepare for the launch dressing the aisles.
Manager Chris Hughes said: “We are delighted to welcome customers into the new store and show them what we have been working on for the past few months.
“M&S brings the best in quality and fresh food to Swindon. We look forward to welcoming customers over the months to come.”
The creation of the 9,000 sq ft M&S Simply Food store created 70 jobs in Swindon.
The shop features a 48-seat M&S café with specially trained baristas serving Fairtrade tea and coffee, and an in-store bakery offering freshly baked speciality breads, pastries and cakes.
The M&S ‘Dine In’ features along with a selection of flowers, cards and gift wrap available.
In addition, the shop offers a Shop Your Way service, giving customers the choice of ordering from the M&S catalogue in-store or online, with free next day in-store delivery and collection.
Meanwhile, there was more good news for the local economy as leading South-West logistics provider David Hathaway Transport Ltd said it was gearing up for growth following the completion of refurbishment work at its new depot in Royal Wootton Bassett.
Swindon town centre’s Vodafone store has also announced a major refit.
David Hathaway Transport, which acquired the £1.2m site in 2013, has spent more than six months customising the 35,000 sq ft former Del Monte warehouse.
Managing director, Matthew Hathaway, said: “Our rapidly expanding customer portfolio meant we needed to increase our warehousing capability.
“Close to our existing facilities in Yate, the site at Royal Wootton Bassett was a natural choice and it’s already proving a valuable asset.”
Vodafone store manager Alex Leonard said the Swindon store could become one of the largest in the UK.
He said: “We are currently in the process of creating a new store in town.
“We recognise that Swindon is going through a huge regeneration and we want to help shape that future with the most up to date Vodafone store in the world. We are tripling our current floor plan.”