Three new big-name shops are set to open at Fleetwood’s Freeport outlet this week.
Cosmetics business Body Shop and ladies fashion chain Bonmarche will both open on Thursday, with sporting gear retailer Sports Direct to start trading the following day.
Their arrival in the port has been hailed by Freeport as a major boost to the retail outlet and to Fleetwood itself.
But some in the town have called for such shops to open in the town’s high street, which currently has a number of empty premises.
Former Fleetwood councillor Angela Patchett said: “Freeport is great for Fleetwood and I welcome the fact that these new stores are to open. But Lord Street could also do with these kind of shops.
“The empty Store 21 premises would be perfect for a business like Bon Marche. There should be more incentives to attract traders to our high street.”
The new additions at Freeport will complete the centre’s plan to trade full for the first time in seven years this Christmas.
The new Sports Direct outlet will be based at the former Wave Cafe Bar, in the largest retail unit on the Freeport site.
Amanda Elliott, centre manager at Freeport Fleetwood, said; “We are always on the lookout for brands which will reinvigorate our offering here at Freeport and these three brands will make brilliant new additions to the mall. “Beauty and women’s fashion are so important to our customers and it will be such a boost to bring them this huge range of sports brands just before Christmas.
“What’s more it was vital that we found the right partner to breathe new life into the old Wave Cafe building and we can’t wait to see to show everyone the amazing new store.
“It’s even more exciting that we are going to trade Christmas fully let for the first time in seven years - what a brilliant way to end the year.”
On Saturday The Body Shop will be treating customers to complimentary hand massages, skincare consultations and offers plus the first 50 customers will be presented with a free goody bag.
Sports Direct’s opening will coincide with the national Black Friday sales.
Meanwhile, Freeport is to be linked to the new 385-home Harbour Village development by a new swing bridge which will open shortly.