Jingle tills herald Christmas bonanza at Eagles Meadow

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TILLS have been playing a merry tune at a Wrexham shopping centre that’s having a pre-Christmas sales bonanza.

According to Torrey Winter, manager of the Debenhams department store at the Eagles Meadow shopping centre, sales have been going “incredibly well” with the store experiencing its best Christmas for years.

Stores at Eagles Meadow shopping centre recruited more than 60 temporary staff to cope with the festive rush.

A number of them are expected to be kept on in the New Year and given permanent positions.

The largest number of jobs are at Debenhams  where manager Torrey Winter: “Every department is doing incredibly well, with men’s and womenswear especially busy along with health and beauty,” she said.

“It’s already looking better than last year and it could actually be our best Christmas in four years.

“We’ve recently been running a sale with savings of up to 30 per cent but our big sale starts on Boxing Day when we’ll be offering half price on many items.”

It was a similar good news story at The Entertainer toy store, which switched to Eagles Meadow from its former base in Wrexham town centre this summer.

Assistant manager Vicky Smallwood said: “Last Thursday, Friday and Saturday were all bumper sales days for us.

“It seems Christmas shopping has come to Eagles Meadow with a bang.

“We were doing late night shopping last Thursday until 8pm, but we were so busy that our last customer didn’t leave the store until well after that.

“We’re opening late until 8pm again on three days this week – Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday – and we expect to be really busy again.

“I think it helps for the businesses here at Eagles Meadow to stay open late just before Christmas because it gives people who are busy at work the chance to come in and get their presents.

“There was also a great atmosphere at the centre last Thursday when we had carols being sung around the big Christmas tree.”

Vicky added: “The things going particularly well for us at the moment are the traditional board games, like Monopoly, which despite all the technology, families still like to play at Christmas.

“And with last week’s launch of the film, Star Wars toys are also doing very well.”

Assistant Manager Nick Wood agrees that the force of the new Star Wars blockbuster movie is definitely with the Odeon cinema.

He said: “Star Wars has proved to be a huge success so far with many parents wanting to introduce their own children to a franchise that proved so popular to them growing up”

“It’s given a huge shot in the arm to us and the rest of the cinema business and, up to now, we’re not far away from 10,000 people coming in to see it here at Eagles Meadow. We know of one guest who has already seen the film four times!”

“We’re currently doing about 20 showings of the film a day across six screens in both 2D and 3D, so that means it can be seen at least once every hour throughout the day.”

Eagles Meadow manager Kevin Critchley said: “We’ve had a very busy run up to Christmas so far. It’s been noticeably busier since Black Friday and there are some fantastic offers available in the centre.

“It’s very positive and it’s all looking encouraging. The Odeon cinema has a whole host of new releases and we expect Star Wars to be showing to packed houses throughout the Christmas period.”