It has not taken long for a new store to move into the former The Works inside the Old Town Co-op building.

The Works had been part of the Old-Town Co-op Food shop for eight years until it received notice earlier this year that it needed to leave its space selling books, art and craft materials, gifts, toys, games, and stationery.

Discussions started in June, when the store was given 13 weeks to close and leave the premises. 

Signage at the Midcounties Co-op Food store on the High Street show that Boyes has since moved in and has been open for a number of weeks.

Boyes is a chain of department stores across the UK that specialises in the discount retail sector, stocking a mixture of regular lines, one-off special purchases and clearance items. 

A spokesperson for Midcounties Co-op said: “We are pleased to be welcoming Boyes as a new retail partner within our Old Town store.

"The 'shop-in-shop' format offers Boyes' wide range of high-quality products at low prices, including Christmas decorations, clothing, DIY, gifts and festive essentials, and is already proving popular with our members and customers.”

Part of the Old Town store was redesigned to enable the new partnership with Boyes, which has been trading since 1881 and now operates more than 70 stores across the UK.

Boyes is promising to offer customers and members nearly 16,000 new products in the Old Town store.

This move continues an ongoing partnership between the supermarket co-operative and the department store brand which has seen two companies open a number of stores together elsewhere, including Blackpool and Mablethorpe.

When the closure of The Works was announced, the Midcounties Co-op said it carries out regular reviews of its property footprint to, in its own words, ensure it provides the best opportunity to deliver for its members and support local communities across the region.

At the time, members of the public were disappointed to see such a long-running and well-established part of the Old Town area shutting down. 

One said: "That’s a real shame - their good value art supplies are really handy for school work!"

Another added: "I found the Old Town Works to be very useful. Really friendly staff who welcome the children browsing. Will be sorry to see it go."