SUPERMARKET giant Tesco is all ready to move in to Accrington with a £30M superstore.
The flagship 8,000 sqm store on Eagle Street will be on the site of the old Skill Centre.
And, Tesco says the store will create around 450 new jobs in the borough.
Hyndburn Planning Committee gave the scheme the go-ahead this week.
The plan also includes room for 600 parking spaces, which Tesco says will be available for shoppers wanting to park and walk from the site into town.
Tesco bosses hope the Accrington store will be built in nine to 12 months, with a possible opening next summer.
Neil Skitt of Tesco said: "We are delighted with this decision. We believe it represents the information we gathered last autumn which showed people want a store in the town centre."
Tesco wants to make the Accrington store one of its flagship regeneration stores and included provisions for nearly £1M of investment in the regeneration of Accrington town centre.
Mr Skitt said: "We are wanting to give nearly half of the jobs created to the long-term unemployed.
"Many shoppers are doing their weekly shops at out-of-town developments because there is not a facility in Accrington town centre to meet their needs. Tesco will keep more people in Accrington to do their weekly shopping."
However, some traders feel the decision will sound the death knell for the town centre.
Michael Whewell, of Hyndburn Chamber of Trade, said: "It’s a very sad day. I am very disappointed and feel let down by the council. Tesco will be detrimental to the development of the town centre and we have to look again at how we can compete with this type of development."
Chamber of Trade president Ian Smith said: "I have a business in Accrington market and I think the market will empty as time goes on because of this."
And bosses at the Arndale Centre said they will no longer encourage investment in Accrington.
Ray James, asset manager of the Arndale Centre, said: "The council had the opportunity to have their cake and eat it with our proposal for a superstore at the Arndale Centre. I will not be recommending further investment in the shopping centre."
Because of the size of the superstore, the plans now go to the Government Office for the North West for final approval.