BUDGET supermarket giant Lidl will open its new store next week.
And local businessman Robert Silverwood hopes it will encourage residents to shop in Lytham.
The chair of Lytham Enterprise Group, was against Fylde Council’s decision to approve the German retailers plans.
But with just days until the store opens at the former Holt Jackson site on Preston Road, Mr Silverwood (pictured) hopes Lytham will now become a ‘one stop shop’.
The owner of the Lowther Pavilion cafe, said: “I don’t remain convinced that the future of the High Street is that healthy or that it can cope with these sorts of outlets.
“But now it is here I hope people put their cars away and stay in Lytham to shop because this is what we were told Lidl is all about.
“The town could become self sufficient, you could put a ring fence around it and people would not need to leave.”
Mr Silverwood said high street businesses have appealed to the council to introduce a free parking scheme but it has fallen on deaf ears.
He said: “We would like to see at least two hours of free parking in the town centre.
“That way people would not be put off shopping in the smaller businesses on the high street.”
Work on the store started in Spring after it was given the go-ahead.
Georgina Hall of Lidl said: “The new Lytham store not only offers a value for money shopping experience to local residents but has also created up to 28 new jobs, which is positive news in the current economic climate.”
The budget store will open at the former Holt Jackson site on Preston Road at 8am next Thursday.
Established in 1932 Holt Jackson was a library booksupplier.
The company moved to Preston in 2009 and in November 2010 merged with Askews in Preston.
Lytham councillor Brenda Achers said she was delighted to see the store increasing employment in the area.
She added: “It has really opened up this end of Lytham and the building looks smart.
“I am pleased to see the crossing on the road as well, it looks a lot safer for residents to get across now.
“With regards to parking - there is one hour parking on the high street but a consultation to discuss whether we should offer two hours was held.
“Traders wanted two hours but residents felt one was enough, we have to strike a balance and Lancashire County Council, who is responsible, decided to keep it as one hour free parking.”