Primark has announced a £140m investment leading to the opening of four new shops and the creation of at least 850 jobs.

Parent company Associated British Food said it plans to make the investment over the next two years in its UK operations.

As part of that investment the company said “at least” four news shops will be opened.

The locations announced on Friday are:

• Bury St Edmunds in Suffolk

• Craigavon in Northern Ireland

• Salisbury in Wiltshire

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• Teesside Park in North Yorkshire

The new shops will increase selling space by more than 160,000 square feet.

Investment is also being put into existing locations and a dedicated Primark Home space will open in Liverpool.

Alongside the new stores, Primark will extend and invest in existing stores and will relocate its stores in Bradford and High Wycombe. In Bradford, Primark will move from its existing Kirkgate Shopping Centre location to The Broadway in the city centre.

Existing high street, shopping centre and retail parks stores are to be refurbished and upgraded with the funding.

The retailer has been boosting its in store offering in recent years by adding beauty treatments, home ranges and cafes to shops. Collaborations with Greggs are in Primark shops in Birmingham and London.

As of this week Primark customers have been able to purchase products online and collect in store as a click and collect trial was launched in 25 stores across the North of England and Wales.

Earlier this month the retailer said it won’t further raise prices despite significant costs as it announced a return to pre-COVID-19 sales and market share in the UK.

Commenting on Primark’s full-year results, the chief executive of Associated British Foods, said: “We have decided to hold prices for the new financial year at the levels already implemented and planned and to stand by our customers, rather than set pricing against these highly volatile input costs and exchange rates.”

Next year will mark 50 years since Primark opened its first store in England, in Derby in 1973. Today, it has 190 stores and employs more than 30,000 colleagues across the UK.

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