This is it – the shop front the town nearly lost

The design for the new shop front
The design for the new shop front
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Here it is – an artist’s impression of the plan for a shop front that shows Spalding Civic Society had nothing to worry about.

Award-winning butcher Gary Simpson should have opened last week in Hall Place where T Law & Sons Butchers have operated since 1918, but delays were caused over concerns by the society over use of vinyl film, MDF rather than traditional materials and the position of the shop name.

The chairman’s panel referred the matter to the planning committee, with Mr Simpson considering pulling out of the deal should the plan face more objections.

But the prospect of a new business coming to the town that has just received another Butcher of the Year award for its Heckington shop has been welcomed by councillors, who voted unanimously for the plan.

Chairman Coun Roger Gambba-Jones said: “We were concerned about the visual impact because we would not have liked for the frontage to lose any of its attractive features. But as for the Civic Society’s comments, I don’t allow myself to be swayed.”

Now Mr Simpson plans to bring home the bacon to Spalding on Saturday, September 13, when the shop will close for two weeks for a £200,000 refit and re-open to the public on Thursday, October 2.

Mr Simpson – who has shops in Stamford and Lincoln as well as Heckington – said: “It’s great news for everyone, although we should have been open now.”

The refurbishment includes moving the door to a central position, opening up the shop with display counters each side. Hot food and sandwiches will be available, as well as cooked and fresh meat. The six members of staff at Law’s will be retained, with six new jobs on the cards.

Peter Law commented: “I’m delighted for Gary. It would have been sad if we were going to shut and that was it. But I will be doing a bit of work for Gary, so the customers will still see me.”