HUGE cheers echoed through the town centre as a new budget store opened to the delight of shoppers.

Poundstretcher flung open its doors in Basildon on Friday morning as music, fun and happy customers filled the town centre.

About 30 shoppers eagerly waited their turn to grab a bargain while watching fun, games and other entertainment on a stage.

Children and families won prizes and were handed colourful balloons as they entered the store and quickly began filling up their baskets with goodies.

The opening ceremony also featured two-hours of entertainment to mark the first day of opening. There was music, games and family activities run by entertainer Ian Gee.

The grand opening saw shoppers get the chance to win £250 worth of Entertainer vouchers and £200 will be given to Basildon Foodbank.


Shoppers say it’s just what the town centre needs to help reinvent it.

Laura De La Fuente and James Fuente from Basildon were in the queue and said it’s fantastic.

Laura also won a £20 voucher and said: “It’s absolutely fantastic and is now our nearest store and it adds to the town centre as well.

“It’s also better than other budget stores and I think we will be popping in often when we visit the town centre. It’s nice to see something new, especially with the East Square cinema development.

“It’s great to see some life being brought into the town and hopefully it will see more businesses coming into the town.

“I was surprised to win the voucher.”

Couple Trudy and Dean Platt said they love the good value for money.

Mr Platt said: “We lost a similar store in the town but this one’s much better. We love a bargain and don’t alwa