Australian home improvement retailer Bunnings Warehouse officially opened its doors to the first store in Essex today on the site of the former Homebase in Basildon.
The overhauled store on the London Road in Vange, occupies a footprint of 57,000sq ft and stocks more than 30,000 home improvement and garden products. Like other Bunnings Warehouse stores to have opened this year, the Essex branch boasts a garden centre and services, such as paint mixing, key cutting, timber cutting and in-store DIY Workshops to learn a host of skills first hand.
The opening of this store – the eight in Bunnings’ UK estate - created more than 25 full and part-time jobs. There are plans to open a second store in Essex, this time in Harlow, later this year. Bunnings has already launched its Warehouse-format in St Albans, Hemel Hempstead, Milton Keynes, Broadstairs, Sittingbourne, and Folkestone
As part of Bunnings’ ethos that its stores and colleagues should be involved with and interact with their local community, team members have been busy ahead of today’s store opening, helping with projects in the Basildon area. These included creating a flowerbed, water feature and planted flower pots at St Luke’s Hospice, removing skirting and painting walls in the foyer of St Anne Line Primary School and creating a sensory garden at Polly’s Pad.
Basildon complex manager Neil Potter said: “All our team members have worked really hard to get the store ready for opening and have undertaken many hours of training to make sure we have the expertise to help customers with home or garden projects.”
To celebrate the opening, Jordan Banjo member of dance troupe Diversity joined a welcome breakfast for team members. Mr Banjo said: “I’ve had a great time here today opening my local Bunnings Warehouse and meeting the team members. Just like Diversity, success is built on strong teamwork and everyone here is committed to making the store a hit.”