BOOTHS has announced it is entering into exclusive negotiations to lease the supermarket which forms the anchor of the livestock market redevelopment scheme in Malton.

Edwin Booth, chairman of Booths, has given the Fitzwilliam Malton Estate, which owns the site, written confirmation of the firm’s intentions.

Mr Booth said he judged that the size of store met the identified need in the Malton area and will offer a full range of quality food and drink to complement established retailers in the town centre.

The site already has outline planning permission, for a medium-sized food hall, three retail units and a 170-space car park.

Graham Booth, the firm’s property director, said: “The ethos of Booths, which focuses on strong relationships with the best local suppliers devoted to producing great food and drink fits perfectly with Malton’s aim to become Yorkshire’s Food Capital. We share a vision to retail food and drink made in the region with care, integrity and pride.”

Mr Booth added: “It’s also important that the buildings Booths trade from fit sympathetically with the character of local buildings. I am particularly impressed with the designs by architect Jan Maciag, and how the development fits naturally and sympathetically into Malton’s historic town centre.”

Roddy Bushell, estate manager for Fitzwilliam Malton Estate, said: “This is very good news and a shot in the arm for the town. Booths is exactly the high quality retailer we were seeking to open in Malton.

“Booths has an offer firmly based on good quality food and has a genuine passion for locally-sourced food.

This chimes exactly with Malton’s growing reputation as Yorkshire’s food capital.”

The two parties believe the store will open in 2016.

Mayor of Malton Councillor Joan Lawrence, said: “I think a upmarket supermarket would be good for the town. We need something different and we need food stores across the board to suit everyone’s pocket.”

Denys Townsend, chairman of Malton and Norton Chamber of Trade, said: “I am pleased to have an anchor for the site in the name of Booth’s confirmed and look forward to the plans going forward.”