Co-op food store on Scunthorpe's Westcliff estate set to close later this month

By Scunthorpe Telegraph | Posted: 8 Feb 2018

The Lincolnshire Co-op Society has announced that its store on Scunthorpe's Westcliff Estate will close on Saturday, February 24, after 17 years of trading.

The present food store will be demolished as part of a £9 million redevelopment of the town’s biggest housing estate, which has more than 6,000 residents.

But the pharmacy and post office currently run by the Co-op in the same premises will carry on trading after the food store closes, until new businesses are opened.

The Co-op will retain its pharmacy, which will move into new premises later this year.

And residents have been assured a post office will be retained after the developers at Ongo Homes applied to take over the contract.

This means only nine of the 23 full-time and part-time jobs are to be put at risk.

Read more: Name revealed for new hub at heart of Westcliff development in Scunthorpe

Co-op spokeswoman Emma Snedden said: "Investment in Westcliff has been long awaited. It's good that this development is taking shape and that Lincolnshire Co-op will still be providing valued services to the community through our pharmacy.

"We were disappointed that our offer to continue to run a food store and post office at the new Westcliff precinct was not the preferred route forward. However, we are pleased that Ongo Homes has applied to take over the post office, as we know it is important to many people in the area.

"We were determined to keep our food store open for as long as we could and we'd like to thank all our food store colleagues for their attitude, hard work and dedication during a difficult time. We will work with those affected and try and identify other suitable opportunities for them within Lincolnshire Co-op if they’d like to continue their employment with us."

The Lincolnshire Co-op food store has traded for 17 years on Scunthorpe's Westcliff estate (Image: David Haber)

The Co-op food store will be replaced by a branch of One Stop, part of the Tesco business, which is due to start trading next month.

Last year more than 300 residents signed a petition, calling on Ongo Homes to retain both the pharmacy and the post office in the £9 million rebuild of the estate.

The petition was launched after the incoming retailers One Stop announced both facilities would not be included in its new Westcliff store.

Read more: Co-op 'determined' to keep Westcliff pharmacy

Scunthorpe MP Nic Dakin presented the 340-name petition to Parliament after the petitioners, many of them elderly, claimed they faced uphill climbs to the nearest post offices at Brumby Corner and Willoughby Road.

As part of the regeneration project by Ongo Homes and the local authority, the present Lincolnshire Co-op food store, post office and pharmacy in the Westcliff shopping precinct will be demolished.

In 2016 the chief executive of Lincolnshire Co-op, Ursula Lidbetter said the post office was a busy service and urged One Stop to transfer the facility to its new store.

Martin Phillips, Ongo’s development manager, said: "The Co-op convenience shop is looking to close by the end of the month, and we’re aiming for the One Stop shop opening soon after so there is a continuity of service and local residents don’t feel too much disruption in the retail services available to them.

"Once we have dates firmed up for the opening we will be letting people know."

Read more: Today's main headlines from Humberbusiness.com 



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