It's several months behind schedule but the Tesco store at Birchencliffe is finally opening.

Bosses had hoped it would be ready to open ahead of Le Tour which whizzed past its front door in July but the work has taken far longer than expected.

The development dates back to 2012 when site owner Bal Khela teamed up to demolish The Grey Horse pub on Halifax Road, which had become an eyesore and replace it with a supermarket.

However, Kirklees councillors were initially reluctant to approve planning permission for a store due to concerns over traffic on one of the town’s busiest roads, although in the end Mr Khela and Tesco got their way in 2013.

There were further complications when rival supermarket giant Morrisons briefly nipped in when Mr Khela opened a bidding auction. But Tesco were not to be denied their prize after all the hard work they had put in and only a few months later reclaimed the lease.

Given the site’s location the store is likely to become extremely popular as proved with the Tesco store in Westbourne Road, Marsh. And it will potentially mean a huge headache for the Co-op food store and petrol station just yards away.

 

Tesco spokesman Mark Thomas said: “We’re really happy to be working toward opening on Tuesday, November 18. Our new store has created 16 jobs and will provide a great, convenient service to the Birchencliffe community. We look forward to welcoming customers soon.”

* Work to bring a new Sainsbury’s Local convenience store to Oxford Road in Gomersal has started to gather momentum.

Following the completion of site clearance works earlier this year construction on the former White Horse pub site has now begun.

Sainsbury’s is working closely with the site’s developer, Punch Taverns, to carry out the next phase.

The plans, which were granted planning permission in May, will create up to 20 new full and part-time jobs for local people.

Set to open its doors next spring, the store will open from 7am until 11pm every day.