Lidl wants sites capable of accommodating 20,000 sq ft stores. Credit: Lidl

Lidl seeks 80 sites in region

The plans form part of the discounter’s intention to grow its UK estate to 1,100 stores, and follow submission of plans for a new distribution centre near Leeds.

In an updated property requirements brochure issued this week, Lidl GB outlnies 83 site requirements being advanced by its Doncaster property office.

With the exception of some slightly outside official administrative county boundaries, such as Worksop and Dronfield, the vast majority of these are in Yorkshire & the Humber.

Four of the requirements reflect Lidl’s desire to trade up from an existing store: Girlington in Bradford, Heckmondwike, Masborough Street Rotherham and one of its Scunthorpe stores.

Of the larger conurbations, Lidl is seeking four Barnsley sites, six in and around Bradford, three in Doncaster, 18 in the Leeds area, 14 in Sheffield and three in Wakefield.

Lidl said that it has recently submitted plans to develop a 38-acre site at Gildersome, Leeds – a site it bought in 2018 – as it looks to enhance further a warehousing network it has grown by 2.5m sq ft in the last five years.

Now the sixth largest operator in UK supermarkets, Lidl said that the drive for more sites follows a year in which it attracted 1.4m new customers switching over from rival grocers.

The discounter opened more than 50 stores in 2022 and has continued that in 2023 with 15 further openings in the last three months.

Ryan McDonnell, Lidl GB chief executive, said: “The last few years have been challenging for everyone, but we’ve made it clear that we’re more committed than ever to ensuring that every single household has access to a Lidl store.

“That’s why our focus is firmly on the future as we continue to grow and invest in our infrastructure, while keeping a lookout for more sites and locations across the country.”

Chief development officer Richard Taylor added: “Our store expansion has been and continues to be unparalleled.

“In the last three months alone, we’ve opened 15 new stores – more than any other retailer, and in 2022 we welcomed customers through the doors of over 50 new stores. But we won’t be stopping there. Our vision is to have over 1,100 stores in the future, but really there’s no ceiling on our ambition or growth potential. What’s important is that we take a strategic and sustainable approach to getting there.”

Lidl looks for unit sizes of 18,000 sq ft to 26,500 sq ft with room for 100+ dedicated parking spaces, equating to 1.5 acres for standalone stores or up to four acres for mixed-use projects – partners for which include the likes of coffee shop drive-thrus.

Typically, a Lidl sales area accounts for around 14,000 sq ft within a 20,000 sq ft building.

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