Hundreds of people queued to be among the first inside a brand new supermarket in Leeds which has created more than 300 jobs for ‘local’ people.
Asda Middleton, in south Leeds, opened at 10am today (May 19) with special guests, including MP Hilary Benn and pupils from year 4 at Middleton St Mary’s Primary school, who helped to cut the ribbon.
Youngsters from Cockburn High School entertained crowds with a dance display as free food samples were given away. Local ward councillors attended.
Shopper Linda Beaumont, a mum-of-two from Middleton, said: “It is great, My sister and cousin both have new jobs here and it is handy to walk to without getting the bus into town.”
Store manager Mark Buck said: “We’re really proud to be opening our new store in Middleton, creating more than 300 jobs and playing our part in the community. The number of job applications we have received so far is fantastic and we are still welcoming applications now.
“We are excited to get the doors open looking forward to meeting people from the local community. We have a team of colleagues who are willing to provide world class service to our customers.”
Mark is already planning to drive awareness of the store’s Community Life Scheme through supporting local charities and organisations alongside Julie Nolan, the store’s Community Life Champion. One of Julie’s main challenges will be to run the Chosen by You, Given by Us initiative where three local organisations will be voted for by customers to receive support from the new Asda store.
After he cut the ribbon, Hilary Benn, MP for Leeds Central, said: “Asda is a great success story for Middelton, Leeds and nationwide. It is really positive news for the Middleton, Belle Isle and south Leeds area. The creation of so many news jobs for people living locally, the training and accessibility is brilliant. I would like to pay tribute to Asda at what they have created here.”
Councillor Kim Groves (Lab, Middleton Park) said: “The majority of jobs have gone to local people, many who were out of work. The training is great which Asda offers. It is wonderful to see people living around here being inspired and motivated.”