Former B&Q site becomes Bunnings/Homebase first new store

Homebase, owned by Australian group Wesfarmers and set to rebrand as Bunnings, is to replace the former B&Q site in Folkestone, Kent.

Bunnings has promised new stores since buying the 255-store Homebase for £340m in January 2016.

A Homebase spokesperson said: "We can confirm that the fifth Bunnings Warehouse pilot store will open in Folkestone. Our team in the existing Homebase store in Folkestone have been made aware and we will be shutting the doors in July. We expect the new Bunnings Warehouse to open in July at a nearby site formerly occupied by B&Q.

"The new store is approximately 75,000 sq ft and will employ an additional 40 full and part-time team members.

"This is an exciting development for us as our pilot programme builds momentum extending the Bunnings Warehouse offer to a new area of the UK.

"Our first pilot store in Griffiths Way, St Albans is performing well and we successfully opened the doors to our second pilot store in the town earlier this month."

Homebase has rebranded as Bunnings at two stores in St Albans and has plans for Milton Keynes and Hemel Hempstead store rebrands before 30 June.

It plans 8-10 store revamps this year and UK managing director PJ Davis has promised to expand the chain, which, along with B&Q, has been shrinking in recent years.


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