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Waitrose eyes Banbury opening despite scaling back expansion plans

Waitrose is pushing ahead with a long-awaited new £4.6m store in Banbury, Oxfordshire, despite scrapping wider expansion plans. 

Work on the new 38,500 sq ft store has started and is due to complete by Christmas after the contract was awarded to Halesowen-based A&H Construction.

The project has come to fruition after developers Barwood Capital and DB Symmetry agreed a £14.3m funding agreement with owners of the site Aberdeen Asset Management. 

Waitrose property director Nigel Keen said: “We are now closer to realising our long-standing ambition to have a branch in Banbury.

“This is an excellent site for our new store and [we] believe its presence will make a positive contribution towards the town’s future.”

The upmarket retailer has moved to significantly cut costs after revealing plans in February to close six stores and remove some management posts, putting hundreds of jobs at risk.

Waitrose said last September it no longer planned to open seven planned new stores, leading to parent group John Lewis Partnership taking a £25m profit writedown on the value of the land.

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