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Monday, 21 April 2014

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Hopes for better deals as Sainsbury's prepares to unveil Carlisle superstore

Shoppers are likely to be the big winners as competition on Carlisle’s supermarket scene intensifies.

Suzanne Caldwell photo
Suzanne Caldwell

The opening of the £40 million Sainsbury’s store in Caldewgate tomorrow means all the big four chain outlets including Asda, Morrisons and Tesco now have a foothold in the city.

Marketing efforts have been stepped up by many of the stores, with offers to entice shoppers.

Homes across Carlisle have been leafleted heavily by many of the store giants in the past week.

Some have also embarked on a large-scale advertising campaigns.

Suzanne Caldwell, head of communications and business services at Cumbria Chamber of Commerce, believes increased competition could be good news.

She said: “They are going to have to compete more in terms of the service that they offer.

“Hopefully we could be seeing better deals.”

The Sainsbury’s development, which has brought with it 300 jobs, has changed the face of Caldewgate.

Carlisle City Council is considering offers for a plot with planning permission for a store off Wigton Road, in which Tesco, already with two stores in the city, has declared an interest.

Tesco also has planning permission for a smaller shop behind the former Horse and Farrier pub, on Wigton Road.

Meanwhile, on London Road, planning permission is in place for a supermarket in a vacant unit at the St Nicholas Gate Retail Park.

Carlisle City Council deputy leader Colin Glover also holds the authority’s enterprise portfolio.

He said: “When we go through the planning process we do retail capacity studies, and we found there was sufficient capacity.

“Once it (Sainsbury’s) opens people will be interested and there will be a surge towards it as people look to see what’s going on.

“It will be a real boost for people in the area who don’t have cars.”

Each of the supermarkets is upbeat about its prospects of being successful or continuing their success in Carlisle.

A Sainsbury’s spokesman said: “We know that local residents were really looking forward to Sainsbury’s Carlisle opening.

“We are supporting the store with lots of marketing in print, on the radio and with leaflets. Initial feedback has been really positive as the store has helped regenerate the Caldewgate area creating 300 jobs in the process.”

An Asda spokeswoman said: “We believe when it comes to competition, the real winners are customers. So we welcome Sainsbury’s arrival.”

Julian Bailey, head of media at Morrison’s, is confident that the supermarket will hold up well under increased competition.

He says: “We have got a heritage of selling great quality fresh food at strong prices.

“That’s our heritage and that will continue.”

Have your say

It's a shop just like ALL the others.

Posted by dave on 15 October 2012 at 20:36

it would be even better if they sort out them stupid traffic lights they are a joke the timing is way out and because of that i have been avoiding the area at all costs!!

Posted by djr on 15 October 2012 at 12:19

View all 19 comments on this article

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