After over a year of economic doom and gloom, the launch of a new supermarket is stirring hopes of a commercial revival to New Malden High Street.

Following its £1.56bn takeover of Somerfield last year, the Co-operative Group launched a new Co-operative store in New Malden High Street on Friday, November 6, at a ribbon-cutting ceremony performed by children from Burlington Junior School, which received a £200 donation from the supermarket chain.

After visiting the new store for the first time, New Malden resident John Symons said he was relieved some life seemed to be returning to High Street.

The 68-year-old said: “It’s just good to finally fill that empty space on the High Street and I’m pleased it’s not another Tesco because we’ve already got one of those.

“I’ve never really shopped at the Co-op so I’ll be interested to see what it offers that other supermarkets don’t.”

A unique aspect of the Co-operative Group’s business model is its share-of-profits dividend scheme, which offers customers cash back or the chance to donate all or part of their share to local good causes.

Store manager Peter Davey said: “We are proud to serve the local community and this substantial investment in the store means we can now provide a much enhanced service.

“We will meet all the community’s daily food shopping needs and, in the best traditions of the Co-operative, make our contribution to community life.”

Membership of the Co-operative Group costs £1 and is designed to offer members the chance to have a say in how stores are run and support the company’s campaigns on issues such as climate change and social inclusion.

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