A DIY superstore in Southend has reopened, giving shoppers a welcome boost.

In August, it was announced that DIY giant Homebase was pressing ahead with a wave of 42 store closures, including the Southend store on London Road.

However, after negotiations, the store reopened yesterday after undergoing a refit.

A keen customer sent a message to the company asking if rumours of a reopening could be confirmed tweeting: “Hope this is true, too many companies are disappearing off the high street.”

A spokesman for Homebase has since confirmed the news to the Echo.

David Norman, Labour councillor for the Victoria ward, said: “It is excellent news.

“What is really great is that the unit will remain open, none of us want to see large units like that stand empty. It is a very large area and a prominent site. Having a DIY warehouse in the centre of town is a great amenity that will be well used.”

Homebase was bought by Wesfarmings, known for its Bunnings chain in Australia, for £340million in 2016, and the company attempted to rebrand the stores. Basildon’s Homebase was among the first to be rebranded.

The takeover was not successful and Wesfarmers sold Homebase to Hilco, a retail turnaround specialist, for £1.

In August it was announced that a number of stores could be shut for good via a company voluntary agreement - a controversial insolvency procedure used by struggling firms to shut under-performing shops.

At its peak, Homebase had 250 stores across the UK and employed roughly 12,000 people.

The news is a welcome boost to the retail sector in Southend, which is battling a number of store closures and empty units.

Topshop on Southend High Street closed earlier this year, while the recent announcement of HMV closures will see another empty unit in Southend.

The large BHS unit on Southend High Street is still standing empty since the firm went into administration in the summer of 2016.