Shoppers gathered for the opening of Lynn’s new Tesco Extra and Dobbies stores yesterday, as celebrity gardener, Chris Beardshaw, cut the ribbon.
The joint store is the first of its kind in the UK and will see a full weekend of events for the whole family to join in the celebrations.
Mr Beardshaw was joined by competition winners from Dersingham Primary School, who won £500 in gardening equipment and £500 of Tesco gift vouchers to be spent by the school on recreating the eco-garden from their winning competition entry.
Mr Beardshaw said: “It has been a great pleasure to help Sam, Jenna and Bethany cut the floral ribbon and officially open the new Dobbies Garden Centre. I have been hugely impressed with their eco-garden design – it has been refreshing to see the enthusiasm from all competition entries.
“Community projects such as the Here We Grow programme are vital to bringing opportunities and support to our schools, community groups and charities, and I am really pleased to see businesses such as Dobbies investing in our gardening future.”
After the ribbon cutting, there was a chance to enjoy complimentary refreshments and special activities, including a question and answer session with the celebrity gardener.
Celebrations are set to continue throughout the weekend with expert gardening talks, balloon modelling, stilt walkers and musical entertainment to keep the whole family entertained, with even more happening during half-term.
Tesco Extra store manager, Andy Holsten, said: “We have really enjoyed our store launch celebrations and I would like to thank all of our guests and customers for joining us.”
Founders and trustees of West Norfolk charity, Reach For A Star, were presented with a cheque for £1,000 as the first Tesco community donation from the store. Mr Holsten said: “We are delighted to support Reach For A Star and the invaluable work they do for the community. It has been brilliant to meet our new customers and hear their feedback on the store, services and ranges.”
James Lewis, charity founder, said: “As a small, relatively new charity, we are delighted to receive this donation from Andy and his team.
“We are due to pay over £2,000 for a specially-made tricycle for a three-year-old girl with spinal atrophy. This donation will make an incredible difference to her wellbeing, strength and fitness.”
The new Tesco store will feature the new scan-as-you-shop service allowing customers to keep a running total as they shop, there will also be a community room for local charities and organisations.
There will be an extensive health and beauty department with trained beauticians offering treatments at the instore nail bar, as well as sections for homeware, electricals, an opticians and a phone shop.