Burnham-On-Sea, Somerset

August 25, 2005
Specsavers to open new store on Burnham-On-Sea High Street

One of the UK's largest High Street brands is to move into Burnham-On-Sea next month when it opens a new shop in the town.

Specsavers is due to move into a vacant shop on Burnham High StreetSpecsavers, the opticians, has bought a vacant shop next to the Somerset & Dorset pub (pictured right) at the southern end of Burnham High Street.

The building was previously home to Seaside Specials selling seasonal souveniers but more recently was used as a charity shop selling books and bric-a-brac.

A spokesman for Specsavers told Burnham-On-Sea.com that the new store would open "during the next few weeks", following the completion of a redecoration of the store.

While the store's arrival in Burnham is being welcomed by some as a positive sign that well-known 'Blue Chip' companies are starting to move into the town, other locals say it is bound to hurt the trade of existing opticians in Burnham who have been based here for years.

SpecsaversFormer Mayor and current town councillor Louise Parkin said: "There are problems with multi-national companies, but from talking to traders in the High Street, they are about 50-50 for and against. Personally, I'd rather Specsavers than another charity shop."

And Councillor Peter Clayton, who chairs Burnham's planning committee, added: "I think the arrival of Specsavers should be welcomed. It is a well respected company and covers a good range of products."

"After trading in the High Street for over 20 years I can say from experience this new arrival should not harm existing shops but complement them. Existing opticians in the town have their own style of trading and brands and they should keep most of their loyal customers."

"This will however make them look at their pricing, which has got to be good for the consumer. I think even they will appreciate competition is good and it's another shop to keep residents shopping locally."

Specsavers has more than 650 stores nationwide and several in Somerset, including one at Bridgwater and another at Weston-super-Mare.

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