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29 March, 2012

A warm welcome in Warminster

Wiltshire's newest Waitrose, opened on Thursday 29th March at 7am and was welcomed by the community

The 124 new Partners at Waitrose will be celebrating with the people of Warminster when its doors open on Thursday 29th March.

The store will open for early birds at its usual time of 7am and will be officially opened at 9am when the Mayor of Warminster, Cllr. Pip Ridout, joins pupils from the nearby Avenue and New Close Community schools. The local schoolchildren will have the chance to get a sneak-peek of how the store works behind the scenes.

From its first day, the new branch will participate in the Waitrose Community Matters scheme and donate £1,000 between three local projects each month. Customers decide what proportion each cause receives by depositing green tokens that they are given when they shop.

The first charities to benefit from Community Matters will be the Friends of Warminster Hospital, the Warminster Lions Club and the Warminster Military Wives Choir.

The Mayor of Warminster, Councillor Pip Ridout, says:

“I am absolutely delighted that Waitrose is opening in Warminster - I look forward to attending the opening of the store and would like to take this opportunity to wish Waitrose every success for the future.”

115 people from the local area have become Partners (as employees at Waitrose are known) with an additional nine people transferring from other Waitrose branches. Waitrose worked alongside Job Centre Plus to recruit a number of their priority candidates. As Partners in the John Lewis Partnership they are all entitled to a say in how the business is run, plus other benefits which include a discount and annual share in the company’s profits. This year, Partners received a bonus of 14% of their annual salary, equivalent to over seven week’s wages.

Garry Newton, President of the Warminster Chamber of Commerce, added:

“We are delighted to see Waitrose opening here in Warminster and strongly believe this signals the beginning of an exciting regeneration for the town centre. In addition to creating 124 new jobs locally, the new shop will also bring more choice to the area which is sure to be welcomed by shoppers. Waitrose Warminster is great news for the town and we are all looking forward to its opening next week.”

Branch Manager at Waitrose Warminster, Mark Pomeroy, says:

“The past few weeks have been very exciting as the finishing touches are made to the store and the whole team get together for the first time and we cannot wait to begin playing our part in Warminster.

“We have been overwhelmed by both the number and calibre of the applications we received for positions at the store and this has allowed us to put together a fantastic team to serve the people of Warminster.

“The Partners here are really looking forward to putting their training into practice, and getting to meet the local community when we open on the 29th March.”

In addition to offering customers a wide range of products from its most popular ranges, which include Heston Blumenthal, Duchy Originals and essential Waitrose, the retailer will also stock a variety of locally produced food. This includes Jude’s ice creams, snacking nuts from Fussels Fine Foods, and handmade cakes from Marshfield Bakery. Local breweries and vineyards will also be well represented with beers & wines from Ramsbury brewery, Hop Back brewery, Avonleigh Organic Vineyard, Quoins Organic Vineyard amongst others.

Notes to Editors:

For more information contact:

Rob Cadwell
Senior Press Officer, Corporate
t:01344 826182
m:07764 675959
e: rob.cadwell@waitrose.co.uk