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21:24 on Sunday
8 August 2004

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From left to right, managing director of IKEA Wholesale Ltd Klaus Volkwein and Marija Lysak from the Greater Peterborough Investment Agency watch as Peterborough Mayor David Raines (right) presents a bottle of champagne and a bouquet of flowers to IKEA quality technician Penelope Moore.

Fifty thousand new jobs have been created in Peterborough since the cathedral city began an intensive development programme in 1970 – doubling the city’s population and workforce over the past 33 years.

To mark the milestone Peterborough Mayor David Raines presented a bottle of champagne and a bouquet of flowers to Penelope Moore, who has become the first quality technician to be appointed at the giant new IKEA distribution centre in Peterborough.

Penny, who relocated to Ramsey, near Peterborough, from London to enjoy an improved quality of life five years ago, said she was thrilled to be chosen for the honour.

“This is a momentous occasion,” said Councillor Raines, a former senior detective with Cambridgeshire Constabulary. “I have watched Peterborough double in size over the past 30 years to become the successful business centre that it is today and we are planning for further dynamic growth.”

Peterborough’s spectacular growth began with a 20-year expansion programme managed by a government-appointed New Town development corporation. Since 1988 Peterborough City Council has maintained the momentum for growth with a campaign to attract further business relocations that is today managed by Greater Peterborough Investment Agency (GPIA).

GPIA business development manager Marija Lysak said: “Peterborough’s population is expected to continue growing rapidly so it is important to attract further business relocations and to stimulate additional growth among our existing companies.”

The £40 million IKEA distribution centre is located on a 30-hectare (75-acre) site alongside the Fletton Parkway section of Peterborough's ring road and will be officially opened on 10 July. It has 85,000 square metres (915,000 sq ft) of storage space and a customer call centre and will eventually employ 500 people.

The centre, which operates 24 hours a day, seven days a week, distributes stock to IKEA’s existing 11 stores and to regional hubs for onward direct delivery to 170,000 customers. IKEA chose Peterborough for the centre because of its proximity to East Coast ports and the availability of a highly skilled workforce.

July 2003




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