National chain Argos is set to open in Hawick next month – providing a major retail boost for the town.
Work begins next week to convert 1,700sq feet of the Homebase store, and according to ward councillor Stuart Marshall, this ‘dual purpose store’ is hugely significant for the town.
A total of 12 jobs will be created in the Argos store and Mr Marshall, who met with a representative of company last week, told us: “I am delighted that at long last Hawick will have an Argos.
“This is a good news story for our town. It not only brings new employment opportunities but will also attract many people from across the Borders. And in line with the 700 or so other stores that Argos have within the UK this store will be a digital one with computerised pods.
“The fact that a popular and well-known retail name is coming to Hawick is an indicator of a growth of confidence with in how others see us. It’s excellent news.”
Plans of a store share between Homebase and Argos first came to light in January and it has now been confirmed that the store will open its doors on August 28.
Also bouyant is Andrew Farquhar, who was instrumental in kick-starting Future Hawick’s High Street regeneration bid.
He said: “This is without doubt good news for the town. Things are beginning to happen and there is a feel good factor on the High Street now compared to the situation in December last year. There is a long way to go and there is a lot of work still to do but yes, I think it is good for Hawick.”
Argos is a British catalogue retailer operating in the United Kingdom and Ireland and has a total of 737 stores and 340 million website visits a year. It is one of the largest high street retailers online in the United Kingdom.
In August 2013, it was estimated that 96% of the UK population was within 10 miles of an Argos branch.
Ward councillor Watson McAteer said: “This will provide a much-needed local boost and be-sides creating jobs, will attract many visitors and shoppers to Hawick from all over the Borders and further afield.
“This is a significant first step on our road to recovery with the prospect of further announcements regarding new businesses being attracted to Hawick expected soon.”