M&S opening promises 300 new jobs
The opening date for a major new M&S store has been put back a year but the project is set to bring a jobs boost to the county.
The retail giant intends to open on the Eclipse Park, near Junction 7 of the M20, in Maidstone.
But after initially announcing it would open this year, it has now confirmed shoppers will not be able to access it until next year. The firm, which recently announced the closure of a number of town centre sites in Kent, has started work on the 84,044sq ft building after signing a lease with Gallagher Properties.
The store will sell clothing and home goods as well as having a Foodhall and M&S café. It will create up to 300 jobs in the local area.
Sacha Berendji, retail, operations and property director at Marks & Spencer, said: “As part of our transformation plan we’re reshaping our store estate to respond to the needs of the modern consumer. In Maidstone, we’re creating a shopping experience fit for the future by investing in our new store at Eclipse Park. We’re delighted to be working with Gallagher Group and we look forward to opening our doors to customers next year.”
M&S joins Next Home & Fashion, which opened a store at Eclipse Park in 2014. Gallagher Properties also has planning permission for offices and a hotel at Eclipse Park.