Hundreds of jobs likely with Sainsbury’s moving in to DIRFT

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ONE of Britain’s biggest warehouses is being built near Rugby - with hundreds of jobs likely to follow.

Sainsbury’s has signed a contract with Prologis, owners of the DIRFT site, to design a purpose-built depot which covers one million square feet.

The supermarket chain is closing facilities elsewhere in the country as part of a restructuring process.

Daventry District Council’s economic, regeneration and employment portfolio holder Chris Over said: “This is great news for the employment situation which, while it has been better than the national average, has suffered a blow.

“This is a boost for the area and I would hope the jobs are not just warehouse operatives but also that there will be management and planning positions available.”

He also hoped that further jobs will be created if the expansion of the DIRFT site is given the go-ahead.

Cllr Over added: “If the expansion of DIRFT was approved then we would be 
ooking at between 8,000 and 9,000 new jobs and that would be very welcome news for the district.”

Prologis expects to start work on site in early 2013 site and the facility will be complete in autumn 2014.

Roger Burnley, managing
director of general merchandise, clothing and logistics at Sainsbury’s, said: “The distribution centre at DIRFT II is a significant investment for Sainsbury’s.

“We are always looking at ways to serve our customers better and this depot will provide us with a central location to support our growing general merchandise business.”

Managing director for Prologis UK, Andrew Griffiths, said: “We were able to understand what Sainsbury’s requirements and to provide a facility that meets the company’s operational and CSR needs.

“As the decision by Sainsbury’s demonstrates, the move towards rail freight is now gathering momentum.”