CO-OP has opened a new store full of mod cons but the retailer has not forgotten its roots in a village where it has had a presence for more than 100 years.

The near 3,000 sq ft Co-op store in Murton, County Durham, is about 300 sq ft larger than its previous store in the village and supports 16 local jobs.

The retailer made a six-figure investment in the new shop, on Church Street, which runs on 100 per cent renewable electricity, includes customer car parking and two electric vehicle charging points.

It includes a bakery, hot food, Costa coffee express and food-to-go, alongside a chilled, fresh and frozen range, meal ideas, award winning wines, ready meals and pizzas, free-from, vegan and plant-based products, Fairtrade, and, everyday essentials.
It also includes added services including Amazon and John Lewis Click & Collect and offers the Click & Collect of groceries through Co-op’s own online shop,

The Northern Echo:

Store manager Joanne Finnie at the all new CO-OP store in Murton, County Durham.

But bosses have not forgotten the Co-op's long association with the village.

Retired staff members Margaret Hardy, Brenda Hocking and Mary Hepton, who have nearly 80 years service with the Co-op between them, officially opened the new store.

Salvation Army Sgt Paul Casson and Territorial Envoy Mark Simpson also attended the opening to bless the new store.

The Northern Echo:

A blessing for the new Co-op in Murton

And to mark the occasion, Co-op delved into its archives to find and share a photograph from its early days in Murton.

The Northern Echo:

A photo from the archives of Murton Colliery Co-operative Society employees

A funding boost is provided locally through Co-op’s Membership scheme. Community groups currently benefitting at this store include Dawdon 2nd Seaham and District Scouts, Free the Way, Seaham and the Glebe Community Centre.

Students who are TOTUM cardholders – the new name for NUS extra – receive a 10 per cent discount at the Co-op.

Contactless card payment limits are increased to £45, making it easier, quicker and safer to shop.

Joanne Finnie, Co-op Store Manager, said: “We have had a great response – we are extremely proud to be launching a brand new store.

"It has a fantastic look and we have worked to develop the range, choice, products and services locally that will create a really compelling offer to serve the community.”

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Sean White, Co-op Area Manager, added: “Co-op is committed to connecting communities and making a difference locally, and our aim is to operate at the heart of local life. We are looking forward to welcoming customers old and new now into their new Co-op store.

"We also want customers to know that they can become a Member of the Co-op. In addition to unlocking additional value and personalised offers for themselves, our Members help to make a difference to local causes.

"Co-op donates 2p in every pound to community causes every time a Member swipes their Membership card when buying own-branded products – so by shopping at the Co-op our Members are also helping to make good things happen in the community.”

For details of Co-op Membership visit