A NEW budget store to open in Barnstaple took more than double the amount of sales it had expected in its opening weekend.
Poundstretcher officially opened at Roundswell Retail Park, in the former Staples building, on Friday.
Manager Nikki Dunn, 39, said the opening weekend had “exceeded all expectations”.
She said: “It’s been absolutely mad. We’ve taken double the amount of takings we had budgeted for that weekend. Most people have been buying food, drink and toiletries. Everyone seems to like it.
“We’ve done better than anybody thought. I’ve seen people in here from all over North Devon and especially Bideford. On Saturday, I’d say 75% of the people in here were from Bideford.
“It’s bringing people to this side of town which is not only good for the retail park but also for Sainsburys.
Ms Dunn also said the new store had filled its 19 newly-created jobs solely with local people.
She said: “Every new member of staff we’ve taken on is from North Devon and was previously unemployed.
“It’s certainly a good thing that we’ve managed to give those people, who are mostly from Barnstaple and Bideford, jobs.”
As well as a wide range of food, drink, toiletries, homeware and gifts on offer, Barnstaple’s Poundstretcher also boasts the South West’s first Pet Hut.
Ms Dunn said: “The Pet Hut has got a lot to offer for all kinds of animals. It’s a new idea and this is the first one in Southern England. There are only 11 across the whole country.”
Poundstretcher is open Monday to Friday, 9am until 8pm, and the same hours on Saturday until Christmas. Sunday opening hours are 11am until 5pm.
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