NEARLY seven years after it burned down, a replacement food store is finally to be opened in Hamworthy.

The new Co-operative store in Blandford Road is nearing completion and is due to open its doors to shoppers on Thursday, May 8. 

It will replace the temporary cabin that has provided a limited range of groceries since the fire in late summer of 2007.

Residents like Pat Bullock, chairman of Friends of Hamworthy Park, have welcomed the new store.

“We really deserve a supermarket in Hamworthy,” she said.

“But it’s good we’re having something after all this time.

“When we get in there and start walking around it will probably be bigger than we think.”

The 3,000sq ft store is to be officially opened by youngsters from Twin Sails Infant School, who will bury a time capsule with community items.

Store manager Simon Carpenter said: “We know Hamworthy residents have waited a long time and we are excited about welcoming them in to the new state-of-the-art store next week.”

There will be three self-service scan tills and he said the store would be packed with modern and interesting meal ideas, ready meals and an in-store bakery.

“We are thrilled to be opening the doors of our new store, and are looking forward to serving customers.

“As a community retailer, we are delighted that Twin Sails Bridge Sails School is playing a central role in the opening,” he added.

The community mural that has brightened up the hoardings for the last few years is being preserved and displayed and the British Legion clock from the closed club opposite the store, has been incorporated.

Opening hours of the new store will be 7am to 11pm every day.