Arena Church leases Woolworths building

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The Arena Church in Ilkeston has confirmed that it will take over the former Woolworths building.

The Bath Street building has stood empty since Woolworths closed in 2008.

Options for the store, include a vintage goods and clothing shop, a quality coffee shop serving handmade food, and retro furniture sales and repairs.

A spokesman said: “An opportunity has arisen to take on the lease, on favourable terms, from a local and very helpful businessman, who knew about Arena and what we do in the community.

“Ultimately we would like to open the store up again for retail space with all profits going into the local community. We also would like to be able to train, educate and employ local people from the store too.”

They now need to secure substantial funding from grants and local businesses.

Lead pastor, Kristian Thorpe, said: “As a church and charity we are excited by the possibility of re-opening this iconic building as a shop sales area once again. To see a tired building restored has to be good news for the high street.”

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