All the places in Kent that could get a new Lidl as supermarket announces plans to open more stores

Lidl hopes to expand into a number of Kent towns, including Chatham, Ramsgate and Whitstable
Lidl hopes to expand into a number of Kent towns, including Chatham, Ramsgate and Whitstable -Credit:Danny Loo/CPG Media

Lidl has plans to open hundreds of new stores across the country - and it has now revealed where in Kent it hopes to expand its brand. The German discount chain, which is now the UK’s sixth biggest supermarket, is offering more than £20,000 to people who help it secure new sites.

London, Edinburgh, Leeds and Liverpool are among the locations the supermarket chain hopes to launch its new branches. Lidl already operates around 960 stores including in Ashford, Medway, Sittingbourne, Maidstone and Tunbridge Wells.

The retailer has listed Canterbury among its picks for new store locations in Kent. This comes after the city's only Lidl store in Sturry Road closed for good last year as the site had been deemed “no longer fit for purpose.”

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However, Lidl said it is now looking for sites for new stores in a swathe of locations - including Kent. The full list of Kent locations Lidl hopes to open in is as follows:

  • Ashford - Central

  • Ashford - North

  • Ashford - South east

  • Canterbury - Sturry

  • Canterbury - Wincheap

  • Chatham

  • Cranbrook

  • Deal

  • Dover

  • Faversham

  • Folkestone (relocation)

  • Gillingham

  • Hythe

  • Isle of Sheppey

  • Maidstone - North East

  • Maidstone - South East

  • Margate

  • Paddock Wood

  • Rainham

  • Ramsgate

  • Ramsgate Westwood Cross (relocation)

  • Rochester

  • Royal Tunbridge Wells - North

  • Sevenoaks - North

  • Snodland

  • Staplehurst

  • Strood

  • Swanscombe/Northfleet

  • Tenterden

  • Tonbridge (relocation)

  • Walderslade

  • Whitstable

Ahead of the planned expansion, Lidl has said it needs to open supermarkets in prominent locations with easy access and a strong flow of traffic or pedestrians, allowing for unit sizes between 18,000 and 26,500 square feet, and more than 100 car parking spaces. If it successfully finds a good location, it is willing to pay a finder’s fee of 1.5 per cent of the total freehold purchase price, or 10 per cent of the first year’s rent for leaseholds, which would equate to £22,500 for a completed £1.5 million site purchase.

A finder’s fee can be paid to any member of the public who identifies a suitable site for it to open a new store. Richard Taylor, Lidl Great Britain’s chief development officer, said: “As we celebrate our 30th year, our commitment to ensuring that all households across the country have access to high-quality produce at affordable prices is stronger than ever.

“We’re planning to open hundreds of new Lidl stores but ultimately see no ceiling on our ambition or growth potential. This is why we’re continuing to invest in new locations whilst exploring innovative routes to expansion.”

Lidl has an eight per cent share of the UK grocery market, its highest ever level, having grown its customer base since last year, according to figures by Kantar published last week. This puts it only slightly behind Morrisons, which has an 8.7 per cent share of the grocery market.

Rival German discounter Aldi recently overtook Morrisons to be the UK’s fourth largest supermarket, amid rapid expansion across the country and as more households looked to make savings through the cost-of-living crisis. Meanwhile, Tesco has retained the title as the UK’s biggest supermarket with a 27.4 per cent share of the market, significantly ahead of any of its rivals.

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