Arrival of new Chippenham store brings end to five-year job hunt

Kate Harrington with B&M interim store manager Mike Hedley

B&M staff outside the new store

First published in News by , Senior reporter

After five years of being out of work, Kate Harrington had all but given up hope of getting a job.

But the 24-year-old’s luck turned with the arrival of B&M in Chippenham and she is thrilled to be working in the new Bumpers Way store, which opens at 9am tomorrow.

Miss Harrington, who lives in Corsham, applied for an eight-hour general assistant position but impressed the firm so much she was offered the role of supervisor.

“I was over the moon to get a job and then on induction day I was told I was going to be supervisor. I was thrilled,” she said.

Miss Harrington, who has one daughter aged four and another of 14 months, was made redundant from Threshers when it closed down in Market Place, Chippenham.

“I was constantly looking for work but only had 15 interviews in five years,” she said. “It was quite difficult because some people didn’t want to employ me because of childcare. I was thinking, ‘what’s the point?’ “Then B&M came along and took a chance and I’m very pleased. A big store like this is giving so many people opportunities.”

Interim manager Mike Hedley said: “Kate was very quickly recognised by us.”

He said the response during recruitment was “phenomenal” and about 300 people got through to the interview stage, which took place over two hours.

Mr Hedley said: “It includes group activities to see who can prioritise and see how they interact, because we want people with a bit of pizzazz.”

A new store manager, recruited from Chippenham, is to take over from him in ten weeks.

The firm has employed 60 people, mostly from the Chippenham and Malmesbury areas, 20 fewer than B&M announced last month. There is a mixture of part-time roles plus some full-time management roles. The store sells discount products.

Comments (4)

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5:51pm Wed 5 Feb 14

Locksmith says...

Chippenham attracts yet another top, top store!
Chippenham attracts yet another top, top store! Locksmith
  • Score: 1

6:09pm Wed 5 Feb 14

Yer Tis says...

And they then employ 25% few people than they agreed to take on!

But what the heck, for at least 60 people they have a job, and that will make a big difference for them!
And they then employ 25% few people than they agreed to take on! But what the heck, for at least 60 people they have a job, and that will make a big difference for them! Yer Tis
  • Score: 6

4:52pm Sat 8 Feb 14

Friend of the People says...

A good news story. What does concern me though is that there are now more places to spend our money on things - often imported - but fewer places to make money making things to sell abroad.

Consumption and a housing bubble is not the way to balance the economy and ensure long term growth.

But good luck to the lady with her new job - she deserves it.
A good news story. What does concern me though is that there are now more places to spend our money on things - often imported - but fewer places to make money making things to sell abroad. Consumption and a housing bubble is not the way to balance the economy and ensure long term growth. But good luck to the lady with her new job - she deserves it. Friend of the People
  • Score: 0

8:54pm Thu 13 Feb 14

busby1980 says...

Yet another way for china to import its tacky, use only once products to the UK, I for one enjoy spending a little more on products knowing that they will last rather than break after 5 mins.
Yet another way for china to import its tacky, use only once products to the UK, I for one enjoy spending a little more on products knowing that they will last rather than break after 5 mins. busby1980
  • Score: 0

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