TK Maxx to open new Yeovil store at former JJB Sports site
Fashion outlet TK Maxx is to open a new store near Yeovil creating around 40 jobs, the Western Gazette can reveal.
The company will occupy the former JJB Sports site which closed in the Peel Retail Park at the bottom of Babylon Hill in September.
It is hoped to be trading by the autumn.
Owners of the site Peel Land and Property said it will spend £500,000 improving the building before the clothing chain moves in.
The total floor space, including an extended mezzanine, will be around 20,000ft.
Plans for changes to the building have been submitted to West Dorset District Council as the retail park is just over the border.
Separate plans for a coffee shop or takeaway next to Boots have also been submitted to the authority’s planning department but Peel is yet to find a tenant for the proposed extension.
Roger Wheeldon, a development surveyor from Peel, said it was hoped to use local contractors for the planned works.
He said: “We are delighted to be able to bring TK Maxx to Yeovil, providing planning consent is approved.
“We were affected when JJB went under and this is one of the first empty stores we have been able to fill in the country.
“TK Maxx have been wanting to come to Yeovil for some time with its other outlets quite some way away in Weymouth and Taunton.
“It is great news for Yeovil as it will create employment.”
Jason Livingstone, president of Yeovil Chamber of Trade and Commerce, welcomed the news.
He said: “It is great that employment opportunities are being created by TK Maxx in Yeovil.
“Despite being just over the border, the site is part of the Yeovil economy and will hopefully employ local people.
“It is also encouraging to hear that the owners want to use local contractors and builders. This is an out-of-town site but we certainly cannot turn our noses up at job creation in the town in the current climate.”
Mr Wheeldon added: “We hope to be able to bring some sort of coffee or food offering to the retail park to meet customers’ demands and needs. We do not think this will be detrimental to the town centre as other towns and cities have shown they can sustain more of the same type of outlet.”