Poundland’s mixed reaction as town branch opens doors

Breakdown of littering offences between Jan 1 and Aug 31 2015

Poundland is due to open to a warm welcome as a local businessman and a councillor praised the chain for coming to Tunbridge Wells.

Months of speculation about the opening of the budget chain will come to an end as the store, on the corner of Grosvenor Road and Goods Station Road, opens to customers tomorrow, Thursday.

At the new store on last Friday, a member of Poundland staff confirmed the opening date.

Councillor Dr Ronen Basu, who represents Culverden ward, said: “I have heard lots of people wanted to have this store and I’m sure they will do a very good job for their customers.

“This will be good for employment in the town and I wish them lots of success.”

Michael Kozlowski, whose convenience shop NY Eleven is on the upper end of Camden Road, believes Poundland will be good for the town.

He said: “We need somewhere like Poundland for those who do not have much money so I think it’s good they’ve come to town otherwise you have to travel to Tonbridge.

“Of course, I would be happier if the site was occupied by an independent company rather than a huge chain, which some stores may find hard to compete against.”

Mr Kozlowski does not believe the impact on his business will be too great, as he considers Tesco to be his main rival.

He said: “Ultimately, I welcome all new businesses to Tunbridge Wells.”

Shopper Siobhan Russell, 73, believed the new store would be beneficial for people who are ‘property rich but cash poor’.

She said: “It offers more choice for people like me in retirement and on a fixed income. It’s good to know I can buy my essentials more cheaply to make my pension go a bit further.”

But businessman Benjamin Dodd, 43, said it was ‘just another name’ which would bring down the town.
He added: “It would have been nice to have the site redeveloped into something with a bit more class.

This whole area needs to be brought more upmarket and I just don’t think Poundland will help do that.”

The chain, established 25 years ago, operates over 540 stores across the UK and Ireland serving about 2.75 million customers every week.

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