Toy shop’s arrival is a coup for Galleries

The store in the Galleries
The store in the Galleries

TOYS “R” Us is coming to Wigan.

Britain’s biggest toy retailer will open the doors of its brand new store in The Galleries Shopping Centre on Monday.

The new 5,883ft outlet will be located in Leigh Arcade on the corner of Woodcock Square, next door to Savers and will be the town’s only toy shop situated on the high street.

Store manager Stephen Cavanagh said: “We’ve been looking for the right store in Wigan for some time, so we’re delighted to now be here with a great team of new staff ready to enjoy the Christmas festivities in The Galleries Shopping Centre.

“We’d like to welcome families, young and old, to join us in store next week and have a look at all the great new toy ranges we have under our roof.

“The team has been building some amazing and so much more. We cannot wait to open up to the Wigan public.”

The store is gearing up to celebrate the first week of opening with lots of fun activities including a visit from Geoffrey the Giraffe, the toy retailer’s ambassador, at the store on October 3.

Geoffrey the Giraffe will welcome shoppers into the new store and there will be the opportunity for children to have their picture taken with him.

Lego, Star Wars, Thunderbirds, Shopkins and Disney’s Frozen will take centre stage as the toy giant expects a great turn out from kids and families.

The Galleries centre manager Victoria Nichol said: “We are delighted to be welcoming Toys “R” Us to The Galleries. As the world’s leading dedicated toy and baby products retailer, they will be a fantastic addition to our retail mix.”

The store’s opening has created 15 new jobs in the town.

The store is the first to open for a while in the main shopping centre which is also due to be part of a plan to redevelop the town centre.

The plans, which were announced by developers Vale Retail in 2013 and granted planning permission in 2014, would see a cultural and entertainment hub created around the current site of The Galleries.

As part of the privately-funded initiative, a multiplex cinema with dining and leisure facilities will be built along with the creation of a piazza-style square and revamped street pattern.

The town’s market traders will be re-housed in a purpose-built development near to Market Place.

The smaller retail units of the Galleries – which has been in administration in recent years – will be consolidated into larger units while the units in Makinson Arcade will be retained and refurbished.

Funded by private investors, the £60m plans are being orchestrated by the Galleries owners Vale Retail.

The news also coincides with the Grand Arcade filling its second from last unit.

The opening of menswear shop New Look Men means Wigan’s newest shopping centre is nearly full for the first time since it opened since it opened in 2007.