THE new Morrisons in Cwmbran opened its doors to the public yesterday with shoppers queuing outside the door as the ribbon was cut.

The mayor of Torfaen, Cllr Wayne Tomlinson, officially opened the store at 9am and within the first hour more than 500 shoppers passed through the doors eager to catch a glimpse of the new store.

May Sims, from Cwmbran, was among the first people to enter the store, and said: “We used to go to Morrisons in Risca, so it’s a lot closer for us.

“I came here on the bus to have a look around today and have spotted a fewbargains. We will do our weekly shop in the week and bring the car, as we do like Morrisons.”

The general manager, Mark Ogborne said: “It’s going how we expected, if not better, considering the weather.

“We have had good feedback from customers and our staff have worked hard to clear the paths for shoppers this morning.”

The 37,000 sq ft store on the northern end of the Meritor site in Grange Road has created 276 jobs.

Morrisons worked in partnership with Jobcentre Plus to ensure that 142 of the 276 new jobs went to people who were previously unemployed.

The new staff are trained in a range of traditional craft skills such as butchery, fishmongery, baking and flower arranging, which are a strong focus of the ‘fresh market’-inspired shopping space, which stocks more than 450 types of fresh fruit and vegetables.

The ‘fresh market’ concept also includes cured meats hanging Continental style above the deli counter, 140 cuts of meat in the butchery and a selection of more than 70 cheeses from the UK and around the world.

At the bakery there are up to 48 varieties of bread baked fresh from scratch throughout the day by in-store bakers.

There is also a petrol station, a café and a 497-space car park.