EAGER shoppers turned up to browse furniture as DFS opened in Barrow.

The store has opened on the former site of Aldi at the Hindpool Retail Park.

Manager Cheryl Park said: “What we wanted to do was have a ‘soft opening’.

“Obviously we wanted people in the town to come and see what we were all about.

“There’s been a lot of time and effort put into the place.”

Miss Park said that, after spending time away training, her staff were raring to go at the opening on Saturday and excited about getting started.

The company, she said, was committed its staff, and she emphasised that jobs within the store had gone to local people.

“They do invest in the right people, so they’ll train them to a really high standard,” she said.

She said it was ‘more important than ever’ that people had somewhere to relax as they spent more time at home amid the Covid-19 pandemic and that DFS was hoping to ‘inspire local customers’.

A steady stream of shoppers turned up to browse the colourful displays and wander through the spacious store.

Rebecca Slater, who was out shopping with mum Joanne, said: “Normally, to get these types of shops, you have to go out of town.”

She said the shop felt ‘very big’ and was impressed with the layout.

“Considering this is the old Aldi, it feels like the building’s a lot better as this type of store,” she said.

Shopper Jason Hackett, from Barrow, said: “We are decorating our living room at the moment, so it’s just seeing what range they have.

“It’s alright isn’t it. It should give Stollers a run for their money.”

In response to the Covid-19 pandemic, DFS has introduced extensive hygiene processes and safety measures across its estate. These are in practice at the new store.

These measures include comprehensive staff training to ensure consistent adherence to social distancing, daily temperature checks for all employees, and limits on the number of customers in the showroom at any one time. There are also hand sanitiser stations and increased cleaning of high-contact areas.