Poundland will open in former Morrisons site, says Crawley councillor

jpco 21-1-14 Morrisons store in Broadfield  (Pic by Jon Rigby) SUS-150115-120051001
jpco 21-1-14 Morrisons store in Broadfield (Pic by Jon Rigby) SUS-150115-120051001

A borough councillor is ‘nearly 100 per cent sure’ a Poundland will open in Morrisons former site in the Broadfield Barton.

Brian Quinn (Lab, Broadfield North) said staff at the Poundland in Queens Square told him they will move to the site which has been vacant since the supermarket closed earlier this year.

He said the Poundland ‘would bring life back to the Barton again’ and added: “Thank goodness in 20 weeks time the Barton will back to normal again.”

He added: “It’s not what I wanted and it’s not what the residents wanted.

“What we really wanted was a major grocery store.”

He said residents will have to pay for public transport to go to the town centre for ‘major shopping’. He said the travel was expensive for the young Broadfield parents who did not own cars.

Mr Quinn had contacted several retailers over opening a store at the unit, which Morrisons holds the lease for.

He said he believed Morrisons closed the store to drive business to its superstore in the High Street.

A spokesman for the chain announced the Broadfield store was one of ten loss-making stores in January. It closed in March. The superstore opened last summer.

Mr Quinn said Morrisons officers around seven years ago ‘promised’ him the Broadfield store would not close because of the superstore.

Morrisons has confirmed it will not pay its £20,000 pledge to the £500,000 Broadfield Barton regeneration project. It made the commitment before its store in the shopping parade closed.

Mr Quinn said: “They reneged on that and they haven’t let a major retailer store come in - I’m sure that’s because of the competition.

“I hope residents of Broadfield will walk with their feet and choose a store that’s community minded.”

Morrisons has refused to comment.

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