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The wait is almost over for John Lewis fans
2:06pm Friday 4th October 2013 in News
THE long wait is almost over for devout John Lewis fans as contractors put the finishing touches to the revamped High Wycombe store.
Frequenters of the John Hall Way department store will have seen it change before their very eyes since the £16m refurbishment began in March.
The Free Press was given a guided tour of the new-look shop by Managing Director Lisa Williams - including a glimpse of the long-awaited clothing department, which is still hidden behind hoardings.
From October 11, when they walk through the new glass frontage, customers will be able to turn left up the stairs, past a mural timeline depicting the retailer’s history, and into the fashion wonderland.
Mannequins joined rail passengers on Platform 3 at London Marylebone this week to celebrate the imminent arrival of fashion at the store for the first time.
She said: "The customers and partners are very excited and have been very understanding with the work going on all around them and I can’t wait to give them the fashion department which they’ve wanted for years.
"Partners are ready to go, we’ve had some tiring moments and there will be more to come this week, but they’re all so proud of their new shop.
"We opened on October 18, 1988 - 25 years ago - some of our partners have been here since day one, they’ve seen it change massively."
Sparkling new sections have sprung up inside - including the swanky fragrance and make-up department and a large haberdashery area, which comes complete with a giant textile tree and giant cotton reels scattered around a demonstration area.
The recently added nursery section has an advice centre which first-time and experienced parents alike can book into for help in selecting what items - if any - they need to buy for their precious newborn.
The store layout has been tinkered with but many departments have remained in the same place.
The refurbishment has seen 200 new partners enlisted to cover the retail floor space, which has increased by 12,727sq.
The completed store will be re-launched on October 11 before an 'official opening' the following day.
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