THE new Co-op store and filling station has opened at Sandford following a £1.9 million overhaul.

Work started on the project, which includes a "significantly larger" store, last year.

Eight new jobs will be provided by the new-look filling station on Sandford Road, the Co-op says.

Co-op store manager Lianne Fransen said: "We are delighted to have undertaken such a significant investment in Sandford and are very proud to be part of the community."

The new store includes an eight-pump forecourt, in-store bakery, hot food zone and Costa Coffee.

Co-op area manager Dave Boyd said: "The Co-op is moving forward with a clear purpose and momentum, and our ambition is to ensure the store is a local hub for people living in the area.

"We also want shoppers to know that they can become a co-owner and member of their Co-op. Our members make a difference locally and simply by swiping their membership card when they shop with us, they are raising much needed funding for organisations who contribute to improving local life."

Only two nearby residents contacted Purbeck District Council's (PDC) planning department to voice concerns when the scheme went through the planning process in early 2017.

Sandford Terrace resident Paul Willis said he had experienced problems in the past with people using the garage.

"We've had discarded needles, rubbish, empty bottles dumped at the bottom of our garden," he said.

A number of offers and promotions will be launched to mark the launch of the new store.

A Co-op spokesman explained: "In January the community retailer unveiled a £50million price investment programme to cut the costs of everyday essentials including fruit, vegetables, bread, fresh meat and ready meals, as well as household brand names.

"And students in the area holding an NUS card receive a ten per cent discount at the Co-op to support them during their studies."