Some of Corsham’s youngest residents gave a helping hand at the opening of the new Co-operative store on Friday.

The former Somerfield at the Martingate centre was unveiled after a £200,000 revamp which meant the shop was closed for a week.

The 70 staff who were employed at the Somerfield store have kept their jobs.

Youngsters from the Mansion House Pre-school Nursery helped store manager Peter Dobbin cut a ribbon. In return the store has awarded the nursery £200 to help them raise vital funds for a new canopy.

Mr Dobbin said: “We are proud to serve the local community and this substantial investment in the store means we can now provide a much enhanced service.

“Customers have welcomed the changes and we hope to meet all the community’s daily food shopping needs.”

Laura Harris, treasurer at the nursery, said: “The children have really enjoyed themselves today. They were especially excited by a visit from Corsham’s resident Dalek.” Matt Booker, who runs the Automattic Comics store on Pickwick Road, brought out the Dalek and other sci-fi creatures to entertain shoppers. The Dalek was seen patrolling the aisles of the new store.

Mr Booker said: “We came along to help out because a new store opening can be a bit dull for the younger kids so we wanted to make it fun for them.

“Everyone has enjoyed seeing the Dalek out and about and it has scared a few people too.”

The opening was also welcomed by Ian Storey, president of Corsham’s Chamber of Commerce.

Mr Storey said: “This is very good news for Corsham and we hope that they will be successful here. We know they have been working alongside local schools.

“Their future in Corsham depends on the community and so the more we can work together the better it will be for everyone.”