The transformation of the empty Toys R Us building in Basildon town centre is set to get underway, it has been revealed.

StoreAway is set to move into the vacant unit in Southernhay after plans were approved in the summer of 2022. 

The much-loved toy shop had been a go-to for families in the town centre for more than 30 years before leaving in 2018 after the firm went out of business.

Now, the building will be brought back into use as a new self-storage business as StoreAway is set to start works next month, an employment and skills plan has revealed.

The planning document shows the transformation project is planned to start in late February 2024 and will be completed by  September 2024.

Echo: How the new StoreAway unit is expected to lookHow the new StoreAway unit is expected to look (Image: Away Cheltenham)

The plan submitted to Basildon Council reveals ten jobs will be created over the seven month construction period, with one office manager and two assistants on site once the storage business is opened.

Approving the details, Basildon Council's head of planning, Christine Lyons, says: "The council’s economic development team have reviewed the updated employment and skills plan submitted with the application and advise they are now happy with the provisions contained within it, which seek to promote local employment and training in the company’s staff recruitment exercise working alongside Basildon Council’s Advice Store."

The firm says it will also offer two annual virtual work experience opportunities to young people, to provide insight on how a self storage business is operated. This can involve mock interviews and weekly contact with those involved.

Explaining the new business, a statement on the StoreAway website says: "Self storage in Basildon has never been easier. At our state-of-the-art facility, we offer a wide range of storage options to meet all of your needs. Whether you’re moving house, decluttering your home, or simply need extra space for your business, we have the perfect solution for you.

"Our facility is conveniently located in the heart of Basildon, making it easy for you to access your belongings whenever you need to. And with 24-hour security and surveillance, you can rest assured that your items will be safe and secure at all times."