DEVELOPERS have completed the first phase of a £25m North-East town centre regeneration project.

CTP Limited says the scheme in Newton Aycliffe, County Durham, is about to transform the town centre with a wealth of new local community amenities.

The completion of the first phase has resulted in a 68,000sq ft Tesco supermarket and a 15,000 sq ft youth centre, including five-a-side football pitches, social and recreation spaces.

The development has also seen the completion of eight retail units and office space. Leases have already been secured with Argos and Leisure Promotions and several other large retailers have expressed an interest.

Guy Illingworth, director of CTP Ltd, said: "It is exciting to be a part of such a large scale regeneration project which is set to bring health and education back into the heart of Newton Aycliffe."

The next phase of the development is due to start in the autumn and will include a new state-of-the-art health centre, library and more retail units.

The development will also contribute £5m towards the creation of a new heart in the town centre for social gatherings in a pedestrian-friendly piazza.

Meanwhile, work is continuing on a town park next to the shopping centre, as Great Aycliffe Town Council's contribution to the project.

Footpaths, cycleways, tarred and paved areas will be completed next week, half of the play equipment has been installed and equipment for the football area should be in place by the end of the month.

Landscaping work will follow in September and it is hoped the park can open to the public by mid-October.

It is exciting to be a part of such a large scale regeneration project.