A new store has opened in Whitley Bay following a £600,000 investment.
The Co-op’s newest establishment in Marine Avenue has created 15 new full and part-time jobs.
Mayor Norma Redfearn and pupils from Marine Park First School were on hand to carry out the official opening.
The new store will bring a funding boost to Whitley Bay’s community groups through the Co-op’s new Membership scheme.
Groups set to benefit in the Whitley Bay area include Whitley Bay Street Pastors, New Delaval and Newsham Residents Association and North East Hearts with Goals.
The store has also appointed a community pioneer, Emma Herron, a member of the food store team, who will work to foster involvement in community activities, from local fundraising to working with charities, schools and voluntary organisations to contribute to local life.
Michael Craven, store manager, said: “We are delighted to have made such a significant investment in Whitley Bay, opening the Co-op’s newest food store is an exciting time for the whole team.
“Our aim is to establish the store as a local hub and we are looking forward to serving the community.
“Our return to the famous ‘clover leaf’ design logo aims to re-establish the Co-op a centre of the community and we want shoppers to know that they can become a co-owner and members of their Co-op. Our members have an opportunity to make a difference locally simply by using their membership card.”