A HUGE jobs boost has been announced as a new supermarket begins its recruitment drive.
Around 350 jobs are up for grabs at the new Sainsbury’s store, which is currently under construction off Hambledon Road, in Waterlooville.
The £39m superstore is expected to be completed later this autumn.
The jobs are aimed at tackling local unemployment and are aimed at people living within a 10-mile radius of the new store – which stretches as far as Portsmouth and Fareham.
It comes as a boost to areas such as nearby Wecock Farm and Warren Park, where unemployment is higher than average.
Gerald Shimbart, a Wecock councillor, said: ‘It’s brilliant.
‘The more local employment there is in getting people out of their homes and into work, the better it is. Even if it’s part-time, any jobs are good news.
‘Hopefully it will encourage more businesses to come into the area and it could have a snowball effect.’
The development comes as a new leisure and retail park is planned on the former Marconi site, off Elettra Avenue, which promises to create a further 300 jobs.
New store manager Phil Bridgwater said: ‘It is extremely exciting to be recruiting staff for our new store.
‘We have been involved with the community throughout the construction process and our contractors, RG Group, have carried out a number of fantastic community initiatives. We are looking forward to further strengthening this relationship once the store opens.’
Sainsbury’s will be working with Job Centre Plus and Havant Borough Council. Training will be available in team leadership, apprenticeships, numeracy and literacy.
A new pedestrian ramp, paid for by Sainsbury’s, should be finished later this month and will link Wellington Retail Park to the town centre.